The third and final volume of our monthly newsletter days is now available for the digital device of your choice. We think you'll find this look back at 1986 through hacker eyes quite enlightening.
Interestingly, surveillance and the NSA were hot topics in our pages way back then, with concern being expressed as to what the secretive agency might actually be up to. The abuse of "metadata" by the authorities in the form of warrantless pen-register info was another hot topic. We noted with interest and suspicion the NSA's attempts to get rid of the Data Encryption Standard (DES) algorithm and replace it with something of their own. We saw the first use of electronic fingerprints and how they could be used to hunt people down nationwide, something that had previously been inconceivable.
The atmosphere seemed innocent by today's standard. "The largest pirate BBS in the country" operated on a total of 44 megabytes of disk space, while cellular phone service had just improved from a maximum of 12 connections per city and could now handle hundreds of calls, which seemed next to unlimited. Cellular modems were starting to be used at a whopping 300 baud with absolutely no guarantees of accuracy. Electronic navigation systems were cautiously being introduced in trucks, but they required four cassette tapes to load the data. Security issues on computer systems focused on the use of default and easily guessable passwords - some things just never change. Words like "Internet" and "Caller ID" began to be used for the first time, while the UNIX operating system started getting more and more pages in our magazine.
The media, as always, got the story wrong, and we called them out at every opportunity. Meanwhile, Hollywood people wound up using many of the ideas and theories printed in our pages for plot points in their latest productions. And, of course, we were almost wiped out by a lightning bolt that fried all of our equipment at the worst possible time.
Finally, 1986 was the year that we first tried to have 2600 meetings. We received such a poor response that we gave up, at least until 1987....
For this collection, we've carefully gone through and looked over every word and image to make sure it's accurately represented in each format. If there are typos, we're careful NOT to correct them. It's quite time consuming and much more accurate than any purely OCR attempts we've seen. Please support our efforts and grab a copy for your selected device.
To get the PDF of "The Hacker Digest - Volume 3," click here.
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