Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Metadata Leads to Meta-Blunder at Washington Post

It seems that at the Washington Post, they still haven't quite gotten the hang of this Internet thing.

Apparently the Post's online site posted a story about a 21 year old hacker who plants adware on people's computers. He agreed to talk to the newspaper if they would give him anonymity, which it did. However, they had a photographer talking photographs of the hacker and apparently she inadvertently included location information in the metadata of the digital photograph files. The photographs were supposed to conceal the hacker's identity.

When the geeks on Slashdot found out about the story, some enterprising uber-geeks went about trying to decipher the metadata and identify the hacker and his location.

They apparently pinpointed the hacker's location to a small town in Oklahoma.

The Washington Post has since pulled the photos from its site. But the damage has already been done. The authorities are probably closing in on the hacker right now.

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