back to article Romanian who hacked NASA spared cooler stint

A Romanian hacker who admitted breaking into NASA's network has avoided jail, receiving a three-year suspended prison sentence instead. Robert Butyka, 26, from Cluj-Napoca, Romania, still faces a civil lawsuit over disputed damages of $500,000 against the space agency's computer systems in a case due to be heard in March. …


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  1. ratfox

    No jail in Rumania, god knows what in the US...

    ...Or in the UK, since he would undoubtedly be extradited to the US.

  2. Simbu


    I wonder how hard the Americans tried to extradite this one?

  3. Thomas 18
    Thumb Up

    Good job

    7 year sentence, suspended as long as you work for us.

  4. Ru

    $500000 worth of damage, eh?

    That's a bit like the good old 'street value' of drugs as reported after major police operations, isn't it?

    1. mark 63 Silver badge

      street value?

      Its worse than that, these figures are usually plucked out of their arses - they'll just add a few random figures together like the salary of the security team , the price of some new kit they had to buy to plug the leak , the wages of the proofreaders of any documents they think were copied etc

    2. My Alter Ego
      Thumb Up

      Steet Value

      This clip from "The Gaurd" puts it perfectly

      It's a brilliant film too - well worth watching.

    3. Matt D

      500,000 anythings is almost always a convenient figure plucked out of the air to make people go "ooh, that's rather a lot". Be it the cost of a strike, a hack into a database, building a bat bridge, or any other story you can read by Googling "500000 cost".

      It's all baloney and should be challenged whenever it comes up.

  5. This post has been deleted by its author

  6. tmTM

    Civil Lawsuit?

    To be conducted in which country?

  7. Buzzword


    No reference to Gary McKinnon? Come on Reg, his story used to feature regularly on these pages.

    1. Microphage

      $500,000 damages ?

      > No reference to Gary McKinnon? Come on Reg, his story used to feature regularly on these pages ..

      $500,000 to replace the same passwordless Windows disk image that McKinnon 'hacked'

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This is what should have happened ...

    ... to Gary McKinnon about 10+ years ago.

    I also agree with the comment above about ridiculously inflated "damages" amounts.

  9. Alan Brown Silver badge

    The stupidly inflated damages amounts

    Are required in order to press charges.

    NASA tends to value even a plastic model shuttle at a few hundred dollars, mainly because they make so few of anything (think faberge eggs)

    Meantime the seriously bad shit (like script kiddies hacking into the original Mars Rover systems to set up an IRC command and control centre(*)) just gets swept under the carpet.

    (*) JPL alone had something in excess of 1000 actively compromised systems in 1999. It was only after spacecraft control systems started being seriously messed with that NASA started taking access control seriously.

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