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Vladuz the eBay Hacker

October 25th, 2007 by shawn · 3 Comments

I like Vladuz. I really do.

I don’t know him personally, and I haven’t had any contact with him – but I like the guy.

Why? Because of a couple of reasons: he’s obviously good at what he does (cracking eBay’s systems) and he has a sense of humor about what he does (evidenced by his taunts toward eBay).

BUT one thing I don’t agree with is the posting of users’ personal info in public – even though I can understand why he did it. How else would a good hacker get the credit he deserves? Okay so that might not be a great justification (the people shouldn’t have to suffer as he fights his cause against “The Man”).

So here we have the dilemma: Vladuz pwns eBay totally and thoroughly, but eBay effectively covers it up, over and over again. When a video of the latest hack was posted on YouTube by my friend Cappnonymous, eBay no doubt managed to get the evidence yanked by YouTube. Vladuz just can’t seem to win: where’s the publicity be deserves?

OK, seriously – Vladuz is definitely for real and I have much respect for his abilities. I just want eBay to admit that not only are their policies jacked-up but that their users’ info is in peril. While I can understand WHY they would cover-up and lie about Vladuz’ achievements, I do NOT understand why eBay can’t be honest and upfront. I mean come on – who’s the one who’s doing unethical and illegal activities here, Vladuz or eBay? eBay isn’t the one with something to hide, as long as they take solid action against their insecure systems/policies.

Anyway this is for you, Vladuz. This is my list of suggestions in your ongoing efforts.

  1. Instead of posting the users’ credit card numbers, etc. do something to help them instead – like zeroing out their sellers’ fees.
  2. Clean up the scam auctions from eBay – like the hacked Chinese MP3-player auctions. (BTW everyone, don’t buy from the seller “hailitele”! Don’t say I didn’t warn ya.)
  3. If you want to really prove that you have access to eBay’s systems, post some of their internal emails. Especially any emails from Meg.
  4. Announce an exploit ahead of time (via a blog or something) and then do it at the specified time on eBay’s site when the world is watching.

I doubt Vladuz will do the first two above, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we see #3 sometime in the future.

Now, to address the rather naive question I saw on one of the eBay message boards: no, Vladuz is not a “Robin Hood”. If he was, he would have altered listing fees for regular Joes like you and me, and he would have mysteriously done something like #1 above for lots of people. Vladuz is probably, on some level, a businessman.

I would guess that he HAS done that, but probably for only a few people that he knows. And I would also not be surprised if the majority of his eBay-prowess benefits him financially. Just think of the possibilities, if you were an eBay seller or eBay buyer, and the eBay servers were your playground! You could…

  • Cancel/lower competing bids and win auctions¬† for low prices
  • You could raise bidders’ bid on auctions you are selling
  • You could change eBay store prices to lower ones, and buy the item
  • You could NARU competing sellers (Vladuz has already shown he can NARU and restore users at will. Oh wait eBay said he really can’t…)

So this guy can benefit in many ways from eBay – he ain’t necessarily a Robin Hood. He’s gotta be in it for the money.

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    Comment by oracle consulting
    2007-11-20 10:00:10

    Nice post indeed. though I don’t agree with u throlly but well said.

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    Comment by loose lips
    2007-12-27 17:23:52

    He may have. He may not have. But now after this article and everyone starts focusing….any and all things associated with anythign mentioned he is now liable for!

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    2011-08-31 15:02:45

    I have recently started a website, and the info you offer on this web site has helped me tremendously. Thanks for all of your time & work.

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