Worse Than Capital Punishment

What could possibly be worse than waiting on death row? Getting banned from using the Internet.

A British man the United States accuses of carrying out the world’s “biggest military computer hack” appeared in court in London Wednesday at the start of extradition hearings.

Gary Mckinnon was arrested Tuesday on charges of computer fraud issued in November 2002 by U.S. prosecutors claiming he illegally accessed 97 U.S. government computers — including Pentagon and NASA systems — over a 12-month period from February 2002, causing $700,000 worth of damage.

If found guilty, he could face up to $1.75 million in fines and 70 years in jail.

Mckinnon was released on bail to July 27 and banned from using the Internet.

I broke out in a sweat when I read that last line. Getting banned from using the Internet…like, forever. A fate worse than death.


  1. There’s an old sci-fi story that I can’t locate anymore, but it dealt with the ramifications of a punishment meted out to a guy who used a computer to embezzle funds.

    They pyscologically adjusted him so that he couldn’t use a keyboard, nor read stuff from a screen or read-out.

    He was provided with adequate funds to live on, but would have to ask strangers to help him with every little transaction…

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