Welcome to VIP Hacker Club

Posted: March 14, 2014 in Articles
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Billionaires Hackers ClubIt’s not a secret that many things in business depend on connections, and IT industry is no exception. Therefore, as a result of acquaintances a good number of prosperous projects emerged.

A striking example of cooperation is PayPal club: a group of familiar with each other PayPal former employees, have combined their efforts to call into existence a good bunch of extremely successful businesses, including Tesla Motors, LinkedIn, Palantir Technologies, SpaceX, YouTube, Yelp and Yammer. Four of them have become billionaires, which has probably made their friendship even stronger.

Well, Paypal Club is a widely-known example, but very few know about the existence of a similar ‘billionaires club’ of former hackers, who started their career in the late ’90s and early ‘00s in the field of information security (this is where they met each other) and now successfully operate in different areas of internet business. TechCrunch has recently told the world about IRC #w00w00 channel that operated from 1996 to about 2002. Actually, the only thing left for the masses is an ancient official website. It says that the group consists w00w00 consisted of 30+ active members in 12 countries. Now fellow-hackers have made their mind to refresh to recollect the old good days in the statuses of millionaires and billionaires.

The w00w00 channel was not the only one; however, the members say that the contingent nourished interest in entrepreneurship. Such peculiarity is inherent in many hackers: say, BackOriface, a piece of brilliant software created by the Cult of the Dead Cow in 1998 was initially designed for remote administration; it was a good attempt to build a legitimate business. Unfortunately for the enthusiasts, anti-virus refused to support the impulse and added BackOriface to blacklist.

A Ukrainian emigrant Kim Yan is also known to be a part of the community, known by the channel nickname ‘yan’. He started with pen-testing, then founded WhatsApp for messaging on smartphones (the company has recently been sold for $ 16,5 billion). Another hacker, Shawn Fanning, also known as ‘napster’ also used to hang out on # w00w00, created a file-sharing P2P-service Napster with Sean Parker, a former president of Facebook, nicknamed ‘dob’.

The remaining members of the elite hacker group hold shown up in Cloudmark, Duo Security, Hotmail, Google, Yammer, Veracode, CloudVolumes, Symantec, SecurityFocus, Immunet and Sourcefire.

Here is the list of mighty channel members:

1. Anthony Zboralski (gaius), founder of Belua. Xynexis, HERT
2. Evan Brewer (dmess0r), co-founder of numerous companies , including Cloudmark and Servio
3. Doug Song, co-founder of Duo Security and Arbor Networks
4. Michael Davis, CTO at CounterTack
5. David Mackay, one of the first employees of Google and AdMob
6. Josh Bronson, the head of security department in Yammer
7. Joshua Drake, Accuvant Labs founder
8. Andrew Reiter, a researcher in Veracode
9. Simon Roses Femerling, worked at Microsoft Research
10. Gordon Fyodor Lyon, scanner Nmap founder
11. Adam O’Donnell, Immunet co-founder
12. Mark Dowd, Azimuth Security co-founder
13. Tim Yardley, a researcher of critical infrastructure.

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