Saturday, November 13, 2010


Late in the campaign of 2008 David Kernell hacked into Sarah Palin's e-mail account. He used an IP masking program thinking it would protect him from his committing a felony. He worked under the assumption that you can be anonymous while on line and do things you normally could not do publicly.

On Friday Kernell was sentenced by a federal judge. 

A federal judge today ordered a former University of Tennessee student who snooped through Sarah Palin's private e-mail account in 2008 to serve a year and a day for his crime and recommended that his time be served at a Knoxville halfway house.

U.S. District Judge Thomas Phillips noted the sentence for David Kernell goes on the books as a term of imprisonment. He said the U.S. Bureau of Prisons could override his recommendation that Kernell spend his days over the next year at the Midway Rehabilitative Center on Magnolia Avenue.
Phillips said Kernell's actions in 2008 merited some form of imprisonment not because his victim was a prominent political figure but because what he did threatened "the expectation of privacy that we all have."
Kernell spoke today for the first time since he was charged.
"I'm not going to make any excuses," he told Phillips in court. "For the rest of my life I'm going to be ashamed and guilty for what I've done."
Phillips insisted that his recommendation for a halfway house should not be viewed as an act of leniency.
"Even if the defendant serves his sentence at a halfway house, this combined with a criminal conviction is significant punishment ... and a sufficient restriction of the defendant's liberty."

What the article does not discuss is how Kernell used an IP masking program to hide his location. ITs very clear intentions were malicious:

Threat Level broke the story in September 2008 that someone using the name “Rubico” had obtained access to Palin’s personal Yahoo e-mail account. Palin was then running for vice president on the Republican ticket. Kernell got into the account by using publicly available information — such as Palin’s birthdate and postal ZIP code — to reset the password to “popcorn” and gain control of her account.
Photos taken from the account — including two pictures of Palin’s children — and five screen shots of e-mail messages were then posted on 4Chan and Imageshack. Bloggers quickly traced “Rubico” to Kernell.
Kernell, a University of Tennessee economics student at the time, had targeted Palin, he wrote in comments online, because he’d hoped to find information that would help derail her campaign and prevent her from being elected.
Although Kernell never found information in the account that was damaging to her campaign, the hack did show that Palin used her personal e-mail account to conduct official Alaska state business. Critics had accused the Alaska governor and her staff of using personal e-mail accounts to avoid public oversight.
Palin called the hacking of her Yahoo e-mail account “the most disruptive and discouraging” incident in that year’s presidential campaign. She and her daughter Bristol testified at Kernell’s trial that the hacking had caused the family emotional distress.
I will leave the reader to decide if this punishment is fair. 

An interesting sidelight: When I began following this story on the old platform in 2008 I began to notice several websites who have been critical of myself (accusing me of lying to fans etc..) and my coworkers at Harmony Gold quickly disappeared as their proprietors took them down. Almost like they had an conflict of interest and they werent telling the truth.

I will leave the reader to decide if that was the case.

No comments:

Post a Comment