Man Freed After Accidentally Hacking Bank of France

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An unnamed 37-year-old Frenchman was recently cleared of any wrongdoing after accessing the Bank of France's internal systems by mistake.

"[The man] longed to avoid premium-rate calls while using Skype back in 2008, and set about hunting for a cheap-rate gateway number to the public networks," writes The Register's John Leyden. "But he inadvertently dialled a number for the Bank of France's debt service system, which picked up the call but did not identify itself. The bank's back-end computer waited for a valid passcode to be keyed in, and the jobless bloke simply pressed 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6, according to his lawyers. The access triggered an alarm that led to the suspect's arrest two years later and subsequent trial. The Bank of France suspended services for 48 hours as a result of the phone call."

"Finding the hacker was not difficult as he had logged his name and address on Skype," notes TechEye's Nick Farrell.

"In 2010, when police showed up at his house, they saw that the computer he had been using was too old to commit any cybercrimes, but they decided to arrest him anyway," writes Softpedia's Eduard Kovacs. "Now, the judge agreed that there was no ill intent on the man’s side and let him off the hook."