back to article Latvia's 'Robin Hood' hacker unmasked as AI researcher

Latvian police have identified a computer science researcher as the folk hero who hacked government systems to expose the fat salaries received by state officials despite a draconian austerity drive in effect. The hacker calling himself Neo and conducting his whistleblower campaign on Twitter was unmasked as Ilmars Poikans, an …

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  1. Winkypop Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Later convicted and sent to gaol...

    ....never to be seen again...

  2. Niall 1
    Coat

    Surely Russell Crowe

    is the modern day Robin Hood

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Finest example of hacktivism

    I've heard of in a long time! My hat's off to him.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    Passport

    ..will now probably be taken away and he will no longer be a proper Latvian citizen. At least that is how these three little racist countries treat people who have moved there during the soviet times. It is beyond my comprehension why the EU tolerates these shitty states.

    And NATO fighters are protecting their airspace.... Sometimes I can actually understand the British eurosceptics.

    1. Mad Dave

      What do you call it

      when you make sweeping generalisations about large groups of people, based on nothing other than their nationality / ethnicity?

      Hmmm hmmm, I wonder?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Coat

        Yeah!

        Lisa: Dad, you can't judge a place you've never been to.

        Bart: Yeah, that's what people do in Russia.

        -- "The City of New York Vs. Homer Simpson" [4F22]

    2. Cazzo Enorme

      @Passport

      Wow, nice way to misrepresent the ethnicity problems in the Baltic states. Those "people who moved there in Soviet times" were encouraged to go there by the Soviet regime - a policy that continued up until the collapse of the Soviet Union. The idea was to swamp the native population, in an attempt to remove the possibility of the Baltic states ever regaining their independence. They were of course, annexed twice by the Soviet Union, with mass murder, incarceration and deportation of the native population by the Soviet authorities. Russian became the only official language during this period, in a further attempt at Russification.

      It's with this background that the Baltic states struggle to come to terms with their large Russian speaking minorities. Minorities that don't want to become Estonian, Latvian or Lithuanian citizens, and kick up one hell of a fuss over any perceived attack on their status. They're quite happy to take advantage of the higher standard of living in the Baltic states though, hence why they don't bugger off back to the Russia that they still hold allegiance to. And that unwillingness to swear an oath of allegiance is why they don't get passports.

  5. RJ

    I wonder

    If they will let him be tried by Jury.

    Like the bloke who leaked MPs' expenses, the prosecution may not bother since no jury would convict him.

    1. CoolKoon

      I doubt that

      There are hardly any countries within the continental Europe who have jury trials at all. It's more or less an Anglo-Saxon peculiarity.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It was not him.

    It was his AI. He just claimed credit for it.

  7. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    1. Dave Gregory
      WTF?

      Medication

      I think you needs some. Come back when you're coherent.

      G'night now.

      1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

        To be taken as directed ...... by your MetaPhysician

        Are you going to deny that the world is controlled by shared words, Dave, and entire systems and whole dynasties can be destroyed, and created, by a careful selection of them freely conveyed?

  8. moonface
    Unhappy

    Shame they tracked his tweets!

    I admire his aims to expose the hypocrisy of the political classes. For the normal worker it appears nothing has changed in Latvia, since the old ruse of communist egalitarian wages.

    At a primitive level, I do hanker for an open society where all wages are disclosed. However, I cannot imagine how such a libertarian utopian world would not collapse, whether it be through jealousy or guilt.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Scandinavia ??

    "At a primitive level, I do hanker for an open society where all wages are disclosed."

    Some countries (Sweden, Finland ?) do exactly that.

    1. oddie
      Big Brother

      don't know..

      if sweden and finland do it, but I know they do it in norway.

      Always fun whenever septermber rolls around and you can check online how much the people around you/ the celebrities (well, the norwegian ones at any rate) have earned.

      Of course, it also means that your own earnings are plain for everyone to see, it's a fair system after all :)

      Who watches the watchers? the watched do :)

      1. moonface
        Heart

        Thanks for the replies

        Wow. Never would have thought such a society could exist. Literally, Fair play to the liberal Scandanavians. How I would love this in my office and see all that personal performance pay, for bullshit, that it truly is.

        Shame I don't know many Norwegian celebs off the top off my head other than Morten Harket. Off to see what he has been earning.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    @What do you call it

    I call it a shitty, rascist state who denies ITS CITIZENS, who are "ethnic russians" a passport, making them stateless, because they are not "ethnic latvians/estonians".

    They must be kicked out of the EU if they don't change this right now. And then left to Russia to fix that problem.

    I always thought it were commie propaganda to label these people Nazis, but apparently quite a few of them (at least in their governments) are exactly that - Nazis.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    Estonia And Its Ethinc "Russian" Citizens

    http://flonnet.com/fl2621/stories/20091023262106000.htm

    Among other nasty facts, read this:

    "Russians in Estonia are also deeply insulted by the glorification of Estonian Second World War veterans who fought on the side of Nazi Germany. Every year Estonia hosts reunion meetings of Waffen-SS veterans attended by fascist sympathisers from other countries."

    "After the Bronze Soldier incident, the number of ethnic Russians in Estonia applying for Russian passports increased threefold. Russian passport holders today total 100,000; about 200,000 Russian speakers have Estonian passports, and 120,000 are non-citizens. "

    Every piece of shit can become part of the EU and NATO, it seems. Probably Lybia and Syria will be the next EU members. They have a better human rights record.

  12. ph0b0s

    Whistle blower protection

    I have said this before in these forums. But I think cases like this are a perfect example of why whistleblower protection laws should be extended to some types of hacking. Obviously not all hacking just where no damage is done and the info retrieved is in the 'public interest'. Jorno's get protection when they brake the law to reveal stuff in the public interest, paying for MP expenses details for example.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    Latvia Not Better

    http://russia.foreignpolicyblogs.com/2010/04/20/is-latvia-the-eus-israel/

    "Dmitrijs is not an immigrant. Like most of the people in this room, he was born in Latvia. In fact, even his parents were born here.

    But his family is ethnically Russian. And because they moved here while Latvia was part of the USSR, he is not automatically eligible for Latvian nationality.

    Instead he is classed as a so-called resident alien. Only those born after Latvian independence in 1991 automatically receive citizenship.

    The words in Latvian for “non-citizen” are printed in large bold letters on the cover of Dmitrijs’ passport.

    This means he can’t vote, can’t work in many state-employed positions and often has trouble crossing borders."

    1. Cazzo Enorme

      @Latvia not better

      Latvia would be the EU's Israel if the Russians (the immigrant population) where still lording it over the Latvians - as they did for sixty years.

  14. Cazzo Enorme

    Wow

    Look at all the Russian apologists on here. Nothing Fascistic about their treatment of the Balts between 1939 and 1989 was there? As for that bloody statue, how would the Russians like it if there was a statue of a Nazi soldier in Red Square? It was not a liberation when the Red Army rolled into the Baltic States (either time), it was an occupation, followed by mass murder and deportation.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    Passport

    Apart from that issue with Statue of the Red Army Soldier, denying a citizen a passport is simply a cruelty that cannot be accepted in the EU.

    If we start to try to settle very old scores, 20% of the English population could be labelled "descendants of brutal opressors invading from Brittany in the year 1066".

    I know that Stalin and the whole communist system was evil and brutal, but we can't make the "ethnic Russians" pay for that in the year 2010. And all those Latvian/Estonian/Lithuanian SS soldiers probably also comitted their share of atrocities, by the way.

    My idealist view of the EU is that it is committed to democracy, human rights and (basic) equality of all citizens. All soviet citizens living in the territory that is now the EU have the same right of respective national citizenship of their EU country. Those governments who deny this must be expelled from the EU and NATO.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Read the BBC

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2007/10/stateless.html

    Also, I am not a Russian, nor a communist sympathizer. I just think Russian are human beings as much as Estonians, Germans or Scottish.

    1. Richard 120

      Well

      You're wrong about the Scottish

      1. John Dougald McCallum

        A Scot

        ....and what exactly do you mean by that?

        1. Mad Dave

          ITT

          Anti-Scots racism.

          Being white, we're one of the few races which it is acceptable to mock.

  17. atis

    >> jlocke

    Actually it's not that hard to get citizenship, all You have to do is learn language, some history, anthem and constitution. Could You get USA citizenship without that?

    The problem is that some ethnic russians just don't want to do that. I know many russians, some of them have gained citizenship, but some just don't feel for learning other language.

    For full citizenship acquiring rules please see:

    http://www.pmlp.gov.lv/en/Citizenship/Naturalizacija.html

    You won't find that much different from:

    http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.eb1d4c2a3e5b9ac89243c6a7543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=dd7ffe9dd4aa3210VgnVCM100000b92ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=dd7ffe9dd4aa3210VgnVCM100000b92ca60aRCRD

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