Lauri Love is a 30-year-old hacktivist from Stradishall, UK who was indicted in July of 2014 on charges of conspiracy, causing damage to a protected computer, access device fraud and aggravated identity theft. In that case he and his unnamed crewmates are alleged to have exploited a vulnerability in Adobe ColdFusion to get inside the unprotected computers. According to the FBI, “Love and his conspirators accessed without authorization protected computers belonging to DOE, HHS, U.S. Sentencing Commission, FBI’s Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory, Deltek, Inc. and Forte Interactive, Inc. Love unlawfully obtained massive amounts of sensitive and confidential information stored on those computers, including more than 100,000 employee records with names, Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers and salary information, along with more than 100,000 financial records, including credit card numbers and names. Love’s actions caused total losses in excess of $5 million.”
Love has also been a ubiquitous presence at IRL protests, gaining fame for his choice in haberdashery as well as his vehement and irrepressible anti-establishment views.
He has, for instance, tentatively agreed to write an article for The Cryptosphere, but only on the condition that he be allowed to swear at Adrian Lamo as much as he likes in the finished piece.
He told the BBC, “Should police, having obtained a reason to acquire information but lacking any overt evidence of criminality sufficient to bring prosecution, be allowed to withhold private data? There is a very dire risk that this power will be used to disrupt protected journalistic and political activity.” He is petitioning for the return of his computer equipment, which the government took away fifteen months ago and has been unable to decrypt. The police are reportedly disinclined to release the materials until Love collaborates with the authorities to decrypt the encrypted drives.
This is likely to happen one or two geological ages after he and Adrian Lamo get married.
This past Tuesday he was featured on AnonUKRadio, speaking specifically on the topic of in-person activism. Is it outdated? Is it too dangerous? Is it a moral imperative or a futile gesture? He also clarifies some myths about his own case(s).
Take a listen (and skip past the possibly-GCHQ-related technical difficulties; the real interview starts at the twenty-five-minute mark).[audio https://anonukradio.org/radio/2015-02-24_uk5_22%3A02%3A50.mp3]