Daily Report: Portrait of a Hacker – NYTimes.com

Daily Report: Portrait of a Hacker – NYTimes.com.

In The New York Times on Friday, N.R. Kleinfeld and Somini Sengupta paint a portrait of Hector Xavier Monsegur, known on the Internet as Sabu. As a federal informant, Mr. Monsegur, 28, helped bring down a group of politically motivated “hacktivists” in Europe and the United States, who were indicted on Tuesday on computer crime charges.

Mr. Monsegur’s base of operations was an apartment on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. He attended high school in New York, but left in 2001 without finishing the ninth grade. In recent years, he had been unemployed, the authorities said. They said he was active in computer and hacking circles as far back as the late 1990s.

In 2010, Mr. Monsegur said in a magazine interview, he was drawn to Anonymous, a leaderless, anti-authoritarian movement that has taken up various political causes. The catalyst, he said, was his outrage over the arrest of Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, the whistle-blower site. He became leader of a splinter group, Lulz Security, or LulzSec.

Mr. Monsegur’s neighbors on the Lower East Side found him an irksome presence, complaining about noise from his apartment. “He partied all night,” one neighbor said. “I always made complaints to the police. Nothing was done.”

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