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WannaCry Ransomware ‘Hero’ Marcus Hutchins Admits to Malware Charges

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British cyber-security researcher hailed as a hero for neutralising the global “WannaCry” ransomware attack in 2017 has pleaded guilty to US charges of writing malware. Marcus Hutchins, who was charged on 10 counts in the United States, pleaded guilty to two of them, with the US government agreeing to move towards dismissing the remaining counts at the time of the sentencing, according to a filing at the US District Court in the eastern district Wisconsin.

“I’ve pleaded guilty to two charges related to writing malware in the years prior to my career in security”, Hutchins, also known online as MalwareTech, said in a statement. “I regret these actions and accept full responsibility for my mistakes,” he added. He did not give details.

Hutchins had risen to overnight fame within the hacker community in May 2017 when he helped de-fang the global “WannaCry” ransomware attack, which infected hundreds of thousands of computers and caused disruptions at factories, hospitals, shops and schools in more than 150 countries.

He was arrested later that year in Las Vegas on unrelated charges that he had built and sold malicious code used to steal banking credentials. US prosecutors had claimed that he and a co-defendant advertised, distributed and profited from malware code known as “Kronos” between July 2014 and 2015. He was later freed on bail, and had plead not guilty to the charges.

The case stunned the computer security community and drew fire from critics who argued that researchers often work with computer code which can be deployed for malicious purposes. His arrest had sparked criticism from some researchers who argue that the case could dissuade “white hat hackers” – those who find security flaws to help fix them – from cooperating with authorities.

Written with agency inputs

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Twitter is shocked by Elon Musk’s smartphone fact

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Elon Musk in suitTwitter, as a community, has a tendency to lose its mind over just about anything—but this time, the reason really is quite mind-blowing. In a short Twitter exchange, Elon Musk pointed out that over 80% of the world’s population owns a smartphone. Are these numbers really that high, and more importantly, has anyone ever expected this to happen? Elon’s tweet … Continue reading

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Acer TravelMate Spin B3 student laptop is designed for classrooms

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Kid using TravelMate Spin B3Acer’s latest laptop is a spin on its TravelMate branding and it’s built specifically with students in mind. The Acer TravelMate Spin B3 is a new convertible laptop and Acer says it features military-grade durability. That should make it strong enough to withstand any bumps and bruises it might pick up in a student’s backpack or just from normal use. … Continue reading

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How to use Apple AirPods features on your Android without rooting

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AirPods Pro in handApple’s AirPods are the most popular wireless earbuds on the market (via Apple). In fact, according to BusinessofApps, the company sold some 110 million in 2020 alone. One of the things that make AirPods so popular is the way they integrate with the rest of Apple’s ecosystem — extending it, and adding additional features. For example, Siri integration is much … Continue reading

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