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Worm Creator Offered job by Company Affected by his Worm

An incident in China has opened up the old argument of ethics versus behaviour when the recently-imprisoned author of the whboy Windows worm was offered a number of positions from companies affected by the worm that he had written. Li Jun, an out of work developer wrote the worm (described as China's worst worm) due to frustrations at not being able to find a job.

Despite the practice of hiring 'black hat' hackers being present in the West in the 80s and early 90s (some would claim that it is still taking place), it was rapidly discovered that many had serious trouble maintaining ethical standards of behaviour and the negative press received when the marketplace discovered that a company had intentionally hired a malicious hacker was not worth the benefit of the extra skills that the hacker brought to the company.

Even without hiring black hat hackers, many companies are still struggling with the problems associated with inappropriate Information Security activities that their own staff are engaging in. A quick look at any number of studies published over the last few years will highlight the increasing awareness of insider theft and related problems.

Once Li Jun completes his prison sentence it will be an interesting wait to see whether the offers are still in place and whether he is able to maintain an appropriate level of professional and ethical behaviour in a corporate environment.

29 September 2007

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