LeserbriefThe previous Datenschleuder contained a leaflet about our 'Hacking at the End of the Universe' congress as well as a message from Rowue and Cash saying that they would not have included the leaflet because (basically) we do business with the intelligence community. Most of you have seen the text.
We were a little surprised to see that Rowue and Cash were taking an old matter so seriously. Their letter only cryptically speaks of 'technical equipment' being sold to 'Intellingence organisations' in 'large quantities'. Lets be a little more specific.
Somewhere in 1992 we got a call from a person that calls himself 'Kimble'. He is well known for selling phone-phreak tricks for DM 1000.- and doing other things that are both criminally lame and just criminal. I hear he is also in touch with people that are known to be in touch with the Bundesverfassungsschutz.
I had talked to him once before because I had refused to talk to him together Donn B. Parker and Kenneth Linndup from SRI international. The two of them were doing a study on 'telephone system security' for AT\&T. I am always willing to talk to anyone about anything. This talk was not very productive however because Donn was continually asking questions like 'who are your contacts in ....'. Anyway, they wanted to bring Kimble to this meeting, he was already in Holland, but I said I had no interest in meeting someone that was selling phreak-tricks. So Kimble went back to Germany pissed off.
Back to this Kimble character: He wanted to have a Demon-Dialer(tm), and he wanted us to send it to him with a bill (for DM 350) attached. I told him that this was to be an advance payment deal. Then he wanted to know how much 50 Demon-Dialers(tm) would cost him. I said 'well, 50 x 350 = 17500'. He said that he would order this 50 after evaluating a free sample. Again, I said 'No'. That was the end of our conversation and of all contacts between Hack-Tic and this Kimble person.
When Rowue heard this whole story at the 1992 Chaos Communication Congress he was shocked that I was willing to sell Demon-Dialers to this person. We had a long argument where we both repeated our arguments several times over.
Our argument for selling Demon-Dialers to whoever wants them is that they are a tool, merely useful for making the tones necesary for manipulating the phone system (or doing many other useful things). We have no way of checking what every individual does with her or his Demon, and we don't want to know. We sell the Demon like someone else would sell a soundblaster card (useful for the same things), and we use the money to develop new products to serve the hack/phreak community.
Rowue could not live with our point of view and chose to include his standpoint with the previous Datenschleuder. I regret that we were not asked to give our side of the story back then so we could have placed the whole thing in perspective.
Basically: we never did any business $^*$ with any intellingence organisation, but we reserve the right to do so in the future. Dear intelligence person: you'll find our prices to be most reasonable, call us for a brochure.
$^*$ The dutch BVD subscribes to Hack-Tic, but that's about it.