Friday, July 18, 2008

'Maniacal' computer engineer Terry Childs takes city network hostage

A disgruntled computer engineer has been sitting in a prison cell for four days after locking out everyone but himself from a city computer system.

Terry Childs is accused of tampering with San Francisco's new computer network to give himself exclusive access. He has refused to hand over the password and is being held on $5 million bail while officials try to crack his code.

The Department of Technology employee, 43, allegedly created a secret password to the city government's data network. The multimillion-dollar network stores records such as officials' e-mails, city payroll files, confidential law enforcement documents and jail bookings.

Mr Childs was arrested last Sunday and is being held on suspicion of four counts of computer tampering. His arraignment is scheduled for later today.

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