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   used to get onto the phone conference were his own business. Provided

   he was discreet in how much he said in the conference, he thought

   there wasn't too much risk.


   He joined the conference calls using a variety of methods. One

   favourite was using a multinational corporation's Dialcom service.

   Company employees called in, gave their ID numbers, and the operator

   put them through to wherever they wanted to go, free of charge. All

   Anthrax needed was a valid ID number.


   Sometimes it was hard work, sometimes he was lucky. The day Anthrax

   tried the Dialcom service was a lucky day. He dialled from his

   favourite pay phone.


   `What is your code, sir?' The operator asked.


   `Yes, well, this is Mr Baker. I have a sheet with a lot of numbers

   here. I am new to the company. Not sure which one it is.' Anthrax

   shuffled papers on top of the pay phone, near the receiver. `How many

   digits is it?'




   That was helpful. Now to find seven digits. Anthrax looked across the

   street at the fish and chips shop. No numbers there. Then a car

   licence plate caught his eye. He read off the first three digits, then

   plucked the last four numbers from another car's plate.


   `Thank you. Putting your call through, Mr Baker.'


   A valid number! What amazing luck. Anthrax milked that number for all

   it was worth. Called party lines. Called phreakers' bridges. Access

   fed the obsession.


   Then he gave the number to a friend in Adelaide, to call overseas. But

   when that friend read off the code, the operator jumped in.




   Huh? `Yes I am. You have my code.'


   `You are definitely not him. I know his voice.'


   The friend called Anthrax, who laughed his head off, then called into

   Dialcom and changed his code! It was a funny incident. Still, it

   reminded him how much safer it was working by himself.


   Living in the country was hard for a hacker and Anthrax became a

   phreaker out of necessity, not just desire. Almost everything involved

   a long-distance call and he was always searching for ways to make

   calls for free. He noticed that when he called certain 008

   numbers--free calls--the phone would ring a few times, click, and then

   pause briefly before ringing some more. Eventually a company

   representative or answering service picked up the call. Anthrax had

   read about diverters, devices used to forward calls automatically, in

   one of the many telecommunications magazines and manuals he was

   constantly reading. The click suggested the call was going through a

   diverter and he guessed that if he punched in the right tones at the

   right moment, he could make the call divert away from a company's

   customer service agent. Furthermore, any line trace would end up at