Hitting back at hackers

In police work, sometimes the longest journeys end with the shortest trips. That’s what happened to Brian Koref, who spent months at the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI) tracking down a pair of Swedish hackers who invaded U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, NASA and other military systems, helping themselves to password files and other sensitive data in the process.

Koref was scheduled to fly to Stockholm last month, to testify against Charlie Malm and Joel Soederberg, both 24. But the trip was cancelled when the two pleaded guilty to five counts of unauthorized intrusion into U.S. military systems.

Their trial for invasion of servers at WIRE Ltd., the British company through which they launched their U.S. attack, started last month as well, according to Matthew Richard, former director of WIRE.

The charges relating to the U.S. intrusions make up “a great case with a lot of robust evidence,” said Koref, who’s now in the Air Force Reserve. He works full time at business Internet service pro