I noticed that no one is actually posting a citation to a law or statute; yes I am suggesting that every answer given so far is based on a personal belief about what is right and wrong.
http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1990/18/section/1 is enough for anyone in the UK but as the OP does not say where in the world he is it would be pointless speculating as to what law he may or may not be breaking.
I wonder how many flash drives are outside GCHQ and NSA HQ etc? I see autumn leaves of flash drives on the car park...
I also found out hacking CIA is legal, if you live in China... Or at least, the Chinese authorities don't seem too bothered about what kind of infiltration its citizens are doing to foreign governments or business.
1. CIA stores crap on servers
- Not a good idea to store information on, can be hacked by a skilled-enough hacker
- any expert knows how vulnerable servers are
Therefore the CIA must know that servers are vulnerable to attack.
2. It would be better to store the information on machines physically wired. Classified documents could be stored in those, and anyone needing them would have to be in the same building.
The CIA knows this, therefore, they have willingly put information on a publicly available global network of computers.
Can we argue that it is illegal to access publicly available information? Is it not freedom of the press to collect and spread publicly available information?
It's kind of like putting sensitive information in the garbage bin, then trying to make that garbage bin inaccessable to everyone even on the way to the dumpster... Should we be liable for information put out by the CIA that's just surrounded by lockouts?
Technically speaking, it's just as free as this website, only they have put lockouts.
Servers are connected to the internet, are they not?
No.. Not always. I can guarantee the CIA would not have their internal servers that hold classified data connected to the internet.
A lot file servers for businesses will only have network level access to them. Anyone that would connect a file server that holds sensitive information directly to the internet is quite stupid in my opinion unless they have a very good reason (And I can't think of any).
Almost everything is at least indirectly connected to the Internet.
Yea that is true but in order to get access to that server (Meaning the hypothetical CIA servers) you would have to pivot a huge amount of times most likely (By which time you would have been discovered most likely) until you get lucky enough to compromise a computer that has access to the said servers.
I was just trying to point out that what IWishIKnew is trying to imply (That all servers are connected directly to the internet and they are a huge security risk, and the other things) just aren't true.