Creeps have been around long before the Internet. They were called Peeping Toms. Or worse, rapists. But now the Internet age has exposed a new kind of creep -- the hacker who pries into the personal information of others.
Now we get deep insight into the psychology and activities of just such a creep -- self-professed hacker Christopher Chaney, accused of hacking into accounts, computers and other devices of more than 50 people, including move stars Scarlett Johansson and Mila Kunis and singer Christina Aguilera. He's the suspected hacker who obtained and circulated a nude photo of Johansson which became an unfortunate Internet sensation last month.
But that's not all. Authorities say Chaney took financial information, movie scripts and conversations that celebrities believed to be private. The FBI's Los Angeles office arrested Chaney as part of Operation Hackerazzi, which targeted hacking associated with the entertainment industry.
And here's the strangest part: Chaney has apparently spoken publicly about his hacking personality and activity to CNN affiliate WAWS in Jacksonville, Florida, saying he became addicted to hacking into celebrity lives and information and didn't know how to stop.
I deeply apologize, the 35-year-old Chaney told WAWS. I know what I did was probably one of the worst invasions of privacy someone could experience. And these people don't have privacy to begin with. And I was in that little sliver of privacy they do have.
At least he's remorseful. At least he's given us some insight into what drives a person to pry into the lives of others through hacking and ultimately exposing much of it to the further-prying world via the Internet. But that doesn't get him off the hook. That doesn't make it okay.
It's nice when one apologizes, understanding the wrong they committed. Chaney, arrested months ago, distributed photos of the celebrities he hacked and offered them to various celebrity blog sites, authorities allege. For that, and more, Chaney apparently told WAWS he is sorry.
I've had like six months to think about it, Chaney said, it eats at me... When you're doing it you're not thinking about what's going on with who you're doing it to.
That's nice, that he at least understands now that what he did was wrong. But he's still a creep who wrongly pried into the privacy of others.
He apparently did the crime, according to the confession, and if he's found guilty or pleads guilty, he'll get some well-deserved time.