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Chaos Computer Club (CCC)

The Chaos Computer Club (CCC) is Europe's largest association of hackers, with approximately 7,700 members.

The Chaos Computer Club (CCC) is Europe’s largest association of hackers, with approximately 7,700 members. Initially established in Berlin in 1981, the CCC provides information about surveillance, privacy, freedom of information, hacktivism, data security, and many other exciting things around technology and hacking issues. The Chaos Computer Club is the most influential hacker collective in Europe. The CCC members organize campaigns, events, lobbying, and publications, as well as anonymizing services and communication infrastructure. Many hackerspaces in and around Germany belong to or share a common bond with the CCC.

The Chaos Computer Club’s headquarters is in Germany. The group has other groups in Austria, Belgium, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, and Switzerland. The CCC is well-known for “outing” cybersecurity risks within the public domain.

The CCC received a lot of press when members hacked the German Bildschirmtext (BTX). This attack enabled CCC hackers to get one bank to put 134,000 German Mark into their bank account. The next day in full view of the press, the CCC returned the funds. Their goal was to prove the BTX system was vulnerable and at risk to determine threat actors.

The CCC is also known for its close review and criticism of new legislation that fails to consider crucial cybersecurity considerations. It is a fact that members of the CCC have served as expert witnesses for the German judicial process. This testimony has included both constitutional court and litigation.

As an example of their capabilities, leading security researchers with the Chaos Computer Club hacked video-based identification online (Video-Ident). They could then access one individual’s health record (ePA). The CCC did this to show that the technology is potentially insecure and that its use should be carefully considered for sensitive applications.

 

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