Koreans have long been seen as "hardcore" gamers, but the bizarre tale of one CEO-turned-hacker recently charged with attacking vital systems belonging to the Korean games rating authority may do more to prove the stereotype than a million rushing zerglings ever could.
During March of 2009, the website of South Korea's Game Ratings Board was the target of repeated denial of service attacks, some of which resulted in the group's home page being paralyzed by the sheer volume of fabricated connection attempts for extended periods. Following an investigation, officials pinned the blame on a 39-year-old simply known as "Choi."
Though the technology angle does put this story a few notches above your typical "dog bites man, man punches bear" headline, things get a bit more twisted when Choi's reputed motivation for the crime comes to light.
Choi, it seems, is the CEO of "an agency that helps computer game software developers get ratings from the Game Rating Board." According to the tale found in the JoongAng Daily, Choi had been taking large sums of cash in exchange for guaranteed leniency from the ratings board. As with the gaming and film industries here in America, it is far more lucrative to sell a game sporting a more desirable letter.
So is Choi the newest member of an underground hacker conspiracy hell bent on getting smut into the hands of wide-eyed kids? Not exactly.
As GamePolitics points out, Choi's weapon of choice was a relatively inexpensive Chinese-crafted automated hacking program that he purchased for the meager sum of $351 USD.
For that much cash, Choi purchased tech powerful enough "to freeze the Game Rating Board 10 times between March 4 and 22," utilizing an illicit zombie network numbering greater than 7,400 machines.
So far there is no word on what Choi's punishment will be, but officials did mention that his two co-conspirators, while indicted, were released without serving any actual time.
(Image: United Artists)