Ethics fellow hacks millions of MIT papers

2011-07-19 23:01

Boston - A Harvard University fellow studying ethics has been accused of using the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's computer network to steal nearly 5 million academic articles.

A federal indictment released on Tuesday accused 24-year-old Aaron Swartz of stealing the documents from JSTOR, a subscription service that offers digitised copies of articles from more than 1 000 academic journals.

Prosecutors say Swartz hacked into MIT's system between September and January after breaking into a computer wiring closet on campus. The indictment says Swartz was a fellow at Harvard's Centre for Ethics at the time.

Prosecutors say he intended to distribute the articles on file-sharing websites.

Swartz was released on $100 000 unsecured bond after pleading not guilty at his arraignment on Tuesday to charges including wire fraud.

He faces up to 35 years in prison if convicted.

  • Martin du Plessis - 2011-07-20 00:04

    I think he failed his course right there x_X

  • rhode - 2011-07-20 07:19

    He might have suffered from the delusion that knowledge belongs to humanity instead of the copyright holders. 35 years in prison will surely teach him the difference.

      JJ - 2011-07-20 08:50

      Knowledge should and must be free to all people.

      Bulshidt Meter - 2011-07-20 15:55

      Copyright hinders far more than it aids. See for details.

  • Jonathan - 2011-07-20 08:29

    Ethical hacker?

  • malcolm.stevens.129 - 2013-02-02 10:24

    Words, information and the like should never be copyrighted - once penned or said they should be in the public domain.

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