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Pornographer says he hacked al Qaeda

'I wanted to do something ... I know the Internet'

Jon Messner put the Web skills he learned in the adult entertainment business to work against an alleged al Qaeda Web site.
Jon Messner put the Web skills he learned in the adult entertainment business to work against an alleged al Qaeda Web site.  


From Mike Boettcher
CNN

OCEAN CITY, Maryland (CNN) -- A self-proclaimed Web warrior says he enlisted in the United States' war on terror by mounting an incursion into an Internet site said to be run by al Qaeda.

From his beachfront home, Jon Messner uses his keyboard as a weapon against the enemy's site -- first reported by CNN four months ago -- that posts statements from high-ranking al Qaeda members.

When Al Neda site visitors, who he says he believes are al Qaeda members, discovered the covert operation, they cried "Infidel!"

Messner 's real job? He runs an Internet porn site.

CNN NewsPass VIDEO
CNN's Mike Boettcher talks to an Internet porn entrepreneur who after 9/11 decided to focus his computer skills to root out a terrorist Web site (August 8)

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"I created the amateur housewife-next-door genre," he explained. "I bought a digital camera and convinced my wife to get naked for the Internet."

He decided to turn his expertise against al Qaeda. The organization is led by terrorist Osama bin Laden, thought to be the instigator of the September 11 attacks on New York and Washington.

"I wanted to do something and I thought, 'What do I know? I know the Internet,'" Messner said. "I made it my business at that time to do anything and everything I could to disrupt the communications of the terrorists on the Internet."

Messner, using the aggressive tactics he's employed to run his adult site, said he "hijacked" Al Neda for five days and recorded a "virtual who's-who of every hostile message board and site on the Internet."

Traffic to the site increased under his control, most of it coming from Saudi Arabia, he said. The majority of the September 11 hijackers were from Saudi Arabia.

Messner said he contacted the FBI and told them he was secretly monitoring Internet activity on an al Qaeda site -- offering an opportunity he believes the FBI neglected to capitalize on.

"We could have put whatever we wanted on their Web site and they would think it was coming from one of their own, not from their enemy," he said.

Like many cracked sites, the new Web page mocks its former owners.
Like many cracked sites, the new Web page mocks its former owners.  

Although an FBI agent did visit him, Messner said, his Web site takeover had been discovered.

"Suddenly a message was posted," Messner said. "It said, 'The infidels have taken over the site. They are tracking you. The man doing this is an infidel, a pornographer.'"

The adversaries retaliated with digital attempts to crash his Web-based business, he said. But Messner didn't mind. September 11 changed him.

His Porsche and its "WIVES" vanity plates memorializing his success in adult entertainment are, he believes, a testament that he and his family are living the American dream. And, in his own way, Messner said, he is fighting an American war.



 
 
 
 







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