Chaos Computer Club

From Academic Kids

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The Chaos Computer Club (CCC) is one of the biggest and most influental hacker organisations. The CCC is based in Germany and other German-speaking countries and has currently around 1,500 members.

It describes itself more poetically as a galactic community of life's beings, independent of age, sex, race or societal orientation, which strives across borders for freedom of information [...]. In general, the CCC struggles for more transparency in governments, freedom of information and a human right for communication. Supporting the principles of the hacker ethic, the club also fights for free access to computers and technological infrastructure for everybody.



The CCC was founded in Berlin on September 12, 1981 by visionary Wau Holland and others in anticipation that information technology will come up strong and influence the way people live and communicate on this planet. The fact that Germans respond much more sensitively to Nineteen Eighty-Four-like scenarios (as they already had two of them: the Nazi era and the Stasi-system of GDR) might have played a role getting together. Today, Germans in general tend to be much more critical of all kinds of public surveillance than is common in other contries.

The CCC became world famous when they hacked the German Bildschirmtext computer network and succeeded in getting a bank in Hamburg to debit the online account with DM 134,000 in favour of the club. The money was returned the next day in front of the press.

In 1989, the CCC was peripherally involved in the first cyberespionage case to make international headlines. A group of West German hackers led by Karl Koch (who was loosely affiliated with the CCC) were arrested for breaking into US government and corporate computers and selling operating-system source code to the Soviet KGB.

But the CCC is much known for public demonstrations of security risks. In 1996 CCC members demonstrated an attack of Microsoft's ActiveX technology, changing personal data in a Quicken database from the outside. In April 1998, the CCC successfully practically demonstrated the cloning of GSM customer card, encompassing the A10 encryption algorithm.

In 2001, the CCC celebrated its birthday with an interactive light installation dubbed Project Blinkenlights that turned the building Haus des Lehrers in Berlin into a giant computer screen. A followup installation (dubbed "Arcade") at the Bibliothèque nationale de France was world's biggest light installation ever.

In 2004, a CCC server was owned by !dSR. CCC Owning (


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CCC 2003 camp near Berlin

The CCC hosts the annual Chaos Communication Congress Europe's biggest hacker congress with up to 3.500 participants. Every four years the Chaos Communication Camp is the outdoor alternative for hackers worldwide.

Members of the CCC also participate in various technological and political conferences around the planet.


The CCC publishes the quarterly magazine Datenschleuder ("data catapult") and the CCC in Berlin produces a monthly radio show called Chaosradio which picks up various technical and political topics in a three-out talk radio show. The program is aired on a well-known local radio station named Fritz.


Famous members are co-founder Wau Holland and Andy Müller-Maguhn, member of ICANN board of directors for Europe until 2002.

See also

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