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   Then he changed the modification date of his login patch to the

   original login file's date.


   He stepped back to admire his work from a distance. The newly

   installed patch matched the original perfectly. Same size. Same

   creation date. Same modification date. With patch in place, he deleted

   the root account he had installed while visiting port 2001. Always

   take your garbage with you when you leave.


   Now for the fun bit. Snooping around. Anthrax headed off for the

   email, the best way to work out what a system was used for. There were

   lots of reports from underlings to the three system users on buying

   equipment, progress reports on a certain project, updates. What was

   this project?


   Then Anthrax came across a huge directory. He opened it and there,

   couched inside, were perhaps 100 subdirectories. He opened one of

   them. It was immense, containing hundreds of files. The smallest

   subfile had perhaps 60 computer screens' worth of material, all of it

   unintelligible. Numbers, letters, control codes. Anthrax couldn't make

   head nor tail of the files. It was as if he was staring at a group of

   binary files. The whole subdirectory was filled with thousands of

   pages of mush. He thought they looked like data files for some



   As he didn't have the program he needed to interpret the mush, Anthrax

   cast around looking for a more readable directory.


   He pried open a file and discovered it was a list. Names and phone

   numbers of staff at a large telecommunications company. Work phone

   numbers. Home numbers. Well, at least that gave him a clue as to the

   nature of the project. Something to do with telecommunications. A

   project important enough that the military needed the home phone

   numbers of the senior people involved.


   The next file confirmed it. Another list, a very special list. A pot

   of gold at the end of the rainbow. The find of a career spent hacking.


   If the US government had had any inkling what was happening at that

   moment, heads would have rolled. If it had known that a foreigner, and

   a follower of what mainstream American media termed an extremist

   religious group, had this information in his possession, the defence

   agency would have called in every law enforcement agency it could



   As John McMahon might have said, a lot of yelling and screaming would

   have occurred.


   Anthrax's mother had made a good home for the family, but his father

   continued to disrupt it with his violence. Fun times with his friends

   shone like bright spots amidst the decay of Anthrax's family life.

   Practical jokes were his specialty. Even as a small child, he had

   delighted in trickery and as he grew up, the jokes became more

   sophisticated. Phreaking was great. It let him prank people all over

   the world. And pranking was cool.


   Most of the fun in pranking was sharing it with friends. Anthrax

   called into a voice conference frequented by phreakers and hackers.

   Though he never trusted others completely when it came to working on

   projects together, it was OK to socialise. The phreaking methods he