Hacking in the shadow of 9/11

Friday, 3 May 2002, 12:21 PM EST

They're a study in opposites: K2, stocky and jovial, has created, among other things, a "rootkit"--a tool for locking down unauthorized control of a server after an initial hack. Dittrich, tall and mainly serious, found K2's rootkit on several systems at UW, put there by a hacker who grabbed K2's tool off the Net.

Was he angry? "I mainly thought it was funny," Dittrich said.

In fact, the two--who some might think should be on opposite sides of the computer-security fight--actually work together. They're both involved in a project aimed at creating networks that act as an electronic bell jar, putting network attackers and their techniques under observation.

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