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Mitnick free to use the web again

Courts split on whether such bans should be allowed in the first place

Kevin Mitnick, one of the world's most notorious hackers, is allowed to use the internet again from today.

Mitnick served five years in jail for breaking into computer networks. Although he was released in January 2000, he was banned from using a computer to go onto the internet as a condition of his bail, according to the New York Times.

It is unclear, however, whether similar restrictions can be put on other offenders.

The US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, which interprets law in Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas, has ruled that people on probation may be barred from using computers and the internet.

But the New York Times reported that the court governing New York has decided that such a prohibition is too broad, and that the internet is as vital to everyday existence as the telephone.

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The hacker's tale: an interview with Kevin Mitnick /Analysis/1136282 [25-10-2002]

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