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Hacker mag closure spells bad news for security

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Notorious hacker magazine Phrack is to close its doors after almost 20 years serving the darker side of the internet and communications community.

Yet surprising to many will be the fact the antivirus and security industries are actually coming out to say they will be sorry to see the back of the title which was run by, and for the benefit of, those they seek to thwart.

In its earliest days the magazine dealt with issues such as phone 'phreaking' but latterly it had become a community space for those writing malicious code and sharing exploit information.

However, its popularity was also a bonus for those involved in the war against cyber crime and its disappearance will remove the most immediate insight into the thinking of the hacker community. It may even force those in the underground world of the hackers and virus writers to scatter far and wide and be pushed further into the shadows.

Pete Simpson, ThreatLab manager at security firm Clearswift, told he is very surprised to see Phrack disappear and added that a world without the infamous journal is actually less secure.

"Phrack's visibility was a blessing in disguise, pretty much in the same way as the Full Disclosure community," said Simpson.

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