Accused Hacker’s Day Job: IT Security

Friday, March 9, 2012 @ 05:03 PM gHale

One of the people accused by U.S. authorities of being at the core of Lulz Security, one of the most feared hacking groups around, led a nonprofit group in Galway, Ireland, dedicated to making websites more secure.

Darren Martyn, named in an indictment unsealed in Manhattan federal court on Tuesday, was a local chapter leader of the Open Web Application Security Project, which develops open-source applications to improve security, according to an official at the international group.

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Thomas Brennan, director of OWASP’s parent group, said Martyn resigned last week.

“It’s about laws and ethics, and people have to determine whether they want to follow the speed limit, follow the law,” said Brennan, referring to hackers who choose to break the law. “We have the same skill set as the bad guys, but the only difference is ethics.”

Martyn didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. His Facebook page said he attended the National University of Ireland in Galway and “people who inspire” him include reformed hacker Kevin Mitnick, security professional HD Moore and Mahatma Gandhi.

Martyn was in the same indictment as Jake Davis, accused of being Topiary, and Ryan Ackroyd, accused of being Kayla, both online handles made famous in the hacking world after their group chats leaked last year.

Martyn’s online names were Pwnsauce and Networkkitten, according to the indictment unsealed alongside the guilty plea by Lulz Security leader Sabu, exposed as Hector Monsegur of New York.

The indictment said Martyn currently lives in Ireland, but it was unclear if he had yet responded to the U.S. charges.

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