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FBI Investigating Lynn's Role in Ciscogate

LAS VEGAS, July 29 -- Michael Lynn is being investigated by the FBI for criminal conduct after he gave a presentation detailing what he said are flaws in the critical routers supporting the Internet and many computer networks, according a Wired story by Kim Zetter.

I haven't caught up with Lynn today amid all the chaos here at DefCon. I'll update the blog again when I track him or his lawyer down.

FYI: As of Wednesday, Wired's Zetter and at least 15 other writers were laid off; Zetter is now a freelancer (read: no benefits) for Wired.

By Brian Krebs  |  July 29, 2005; 4:57 PM ET
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Good god, can anyone say Holy Overreaction Batman!?! How about we simply admit that there is a flaw, fix it, fire the lawyers and move on. As for the FBI getting involved, I thought Hoover died. Seriously, if they spend manhours investigating Lynn and any terrorist action happens without their prior knowledge, then whole damn organization needs to be torn down and rebuilt because it's been turned into a strong arm tool for the rich and powerful.

Posted by: Anonymous Coward | August 2, 2005 4:02 PM | Report abuse

So now the FBI apparently works for Cisco?!?! If I find a flaw in a product am I not allowed to discuss that flaw with my professional peers? Good, bad or indifferent isn't it just a matter of free speech? Lynn wasn't a Cisco employee nor was he under contract from Cisco so I don't get it! I know Chambers is a huge Bush contributor but this is ridiculous...Cisco has gotten completely out of control...What's next?

Posted by: IP Damned | August 2, 2005 5:12 PM | Report abuse

I'm at a loss to understand how many people have really missed what's going on here. Is this stuff so behind the scenes that folks are missing it?

From the Wired article by Kim Zetter:

"Mike Lynn, a former researcher at Internet Security Systems, or ISS, said he was tipped off late Thursday night that the FBI was investigating him for violating trade secrets belonging to his former employer."

The article goes on to say that Mr. Lynn resigned from ISS. According to other information that has come out since this whole thing began, this isn't the first time that Mr. Lynn has resigned from ISS.

What most folks seem to be missing, though, is the fact that Mr. Lynn signed employment documentation with ISS. In most cases, that documentation includes statements to the effect that any work Mr. Lynn would do for ISS, using ISS's resources, and for which he received a salary from ISS, therefore *belongs to* ISS. Therefore, it's pretty clear (and this is aimed at the previous two posters) that Mr. Lynn, in moving forward to talk about the vulnerability he discovered as an ISS employee, is in violation of those agreements...assuming they were in place.

If Mr. Lynn discovered something as a result of his employment at ISS, then that intellectual property is owned by ISS. They have every right, just as any other company does, to protect their intellectual property.

It's not my place to judge Mr. Lynn for his actions. He made his decision...I don't know if I would have made the same decision, had I been in his shoes.

H. Carvey
"Windows Forensics and Incident Recovery"

Posted by: Anonymous | August 3, 2005 7:39 AM | Report abuse

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