Commander X (a.k.a. Christopher Mark Doyon) was born on August 18th, 1964 in the rural backwaters of Maine, U.S.A., X has lived an astonishing and mysterious life, usually close to some edge. He ran away from home and was homeless by the age of 14 before gravitating towards the intellectual hub of Cambridge, Massachusetts. He had always taken an interest in computers, and it is technology (and social struggle) that has defined his life work.
As a young adult, he started selling LSD at Grateful Dead concerts where he learned about the Anti-Apartheid movement and other activist initiatives. Deciding to battle injustice, X used his self-taught computer hacker skills to fight for his beliefs, joining different online organizations, including the hacker collective, Anonymous. After hacking several organizations and companies, including Santa Cruz, California's city website as well as corporate giants, Mastercard, Visa and Paypal, X fled and has been on the lam ever since.
Gregg Housh spent much of his teens and early 20s evading an FBI task force while helping to operate the Internet's foremost software pirating rings and otherwise living the life of a criminal hacker. In 2000 the chase was finally over and he was arrested. The next 7 years were spent in and out of court until he plead guilty to conspiracy to violate copyright laws in 2007. He was incarcerated in a federal penitentiary, including a 27 day stay in solitary.
Upon release, he worked a series of computer-related jobs while continuing to participate in various online subcultures. Soon after his key role in Anonymous's global protest campaign against the Church of Scientology was made public in 2008, Housh began serving as a media interpreter and interview subject for newspapers, websites, radio and television. He has appeared on countless news programs and been quoted in publications around the world; meanwhile, he has continued to work with Anonymous participants on various operations, offering advice and other forms of support as needed.
Barrett Brown, whose column received the 2016 National Magazine Award for columns and commentary, is the founder of Project PM, a crowd-sourced investigation into the cyber-industrial complex. In 2012, the FBI raided his house, and later that year Brown was indicted on 12 federal charges relating to the 2011 Stratfor hack. The most controversial charge, linking to the hacked data, was dropped, but in 2015 Brown was sentenced to 63 months in prison. He was released to a half-way house on Nov. 29, 2016.
For more information about Brown's case, and to contribute to his legal defense fund, please visit the Free Barrett website.
Attorney Jay Leiderman co-authored the first ever book on the legal defense of medical marijuana crimes and has been called the “Hacktivist’s Advocate” for his work defending those accused of computer crimes. He has been recognized and won awards for going above and beyond to represent clients accused of all sorts of crimes; from the smallest misdemeanor to the most serious felony case.
After frequently taking on high-profile cases, Jay Leiderman is highly experienced in speaking with the media. He is a frequent commentator in print, on the radio and has even been on TV and in film speaking about his cases. He frequently lectures around the state and nation on various criminal defense topics. Jay has also authored a chapter in a book on the defense of internet crimes.
Jay has dedicated his entire professional career to standing up for the rights of the accused. Jay believes in his role as an advocate for the accused. He has always been a champion of personal rights and a staunch defender of our constitutional freedoms. In short, Jay’s entire professional life has been dedicated to ensuring that those accused of crimes receive the most vigorous, competent and artful defense. Jay has dedicated himself to providing that hard hitting defense while still remaining open and accessible to his clients.
David Kushner is an award-winning journalist and author. His books include Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture, Jonny Magic and the Card Shark Kids: How a Gang of Geeks Beat the Odds, Stormed Las Vegas, Levittown: Two Families, One Tycoon, and the Fight for Civil Rights in America’s Legendary Suburb, Jacked: The Outlaw Story of Grand Theft Auto, Alligator Candy: A Memoir, and The Players Ball: A Genius, a Con Man, and the Secret History of the Internet’s Rise.
Kushner is also author of the graphic novels Rise of the Dungeon Master: Gary Gygax and the Creation of D&D and A for Anonymous: How a Mysterious Hacker Collective Transformed the World, illustrated by Koren Shadmi. He wrote the ebook, The Bones of Marianna: A Reform School, a Terrible Secret, and a Hundred-Year Fight for Justice. Two collections of his magazine stories are available as audiobooks, The World’s Most Dangerous Geek: And More True Hacking Stories and Prepare to Meet Thy Doom: And More True Gaming Stories.
A contributing editor of Rolling Stone and Outside, Kushner has written for publications including The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Wired, New York Times Magazine, New York, and GQ, and has been an essayist for National Public Radio. Many of his articles and books are being developed for film and TV, including Zola Tells All, Masters of Doom, and Dead End on Silk Road. His work is featured in several “best of” anthologies: The Best American Crime Reporting, The Columbia Journalism Review’s Best Business Writing, The Best Music Writing, and The Best American Travel Writing. He is the winner of the New York Press Club award for Best Feature Reporting. His ebook The Bones of Marianna was selected by Amazon as a Best Digital Single of 2013. NPR named his memoir Alligator Candy one of the best books of 2016. He has taught as a Ferris Professor of Journalism at Princeton University, and an adjunct professor of journalism at New York University. He serves on the board of directors of Good Grief, a childhood grief support organization.
Leon Panetta co-founded The Panetta Institute for Public Policy with his wife Sylvia in 1997 upon completion of his service as White House chief of staff in the Bill Clinton administration. He co-directed it with her until 2009, when he left to serve as CIA director and then secretary of defense under President Obama. He returned to the Institute as chairman in 2013.
A Monterey native and Santa Clara University School of Law graduate, Secretary Panetta began his long and distinguished public service career in 1964 as a U.S. Army intelligence officer, receiving the Army Commendation Medal. Upon discharge he went to work in Washington as a legislative assistant to U.S. Senate minority whip Tom Kuchel of California. In 1969, he was appointed director of the U.S. Office for Civil Rights, where he was responsible for ensuring equal opportunity in public education, and later he served as executive assistant to the mayor of New York City. He then returned to Monterey, where he practiced law until his election to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1976.
Serving his Central Coast district in Congress for sixteen years, Secretary Panetta became a respected leader on agriculture, federal budget, ocean and healthcare issues and from 1989 to 1993 he chaired the House Budget Committee. He won passage of the Hunger Prevention Act of 1988, Medicare and Medicaid coverage of hospice care for the terminally ill, and numerous measures to protect the California coast, including creation of the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.
Brian Knappenberger is a producer and director, known for The Internet's Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz (2014), We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists (2012) and Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press (2017).
As Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security from 2005 to 2009, Michael Chertoff led the country in blocking would-be terrorists from crossing U.S. borders or implementing their plans if they were already in the country. He also transformed FEMA into an effective organization following Hurricane Katrina. His greatest successes have earned few headlines – because the important news is what didn’t happen.
At Chertoff Group, Mr. Chertoff provides high-level strategic counsel to corporate and government leaders on a broad range of security issues, from risk identification and prevention to preparedness, response and recovery. “Risk management has become the CEO’s concern,” he says. “We help our clients develop comprehensive strategies to manage risk without building barriers that get in the way of carrying on their business.”
Before heading up the Department of Homeland Security, Mr. Chertoff served as a federal judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Earlier, during more than a decade as a federal prosecutor, he investigated and prosecuted cases of political corruption, organized crime, corporate fraud and terrorism – including the investigation of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Mr. Chertoff is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard College (1975) and Harvard Law School (1978). From 1979-1980 he served as a clerk to Supreme Court Justice William Brennan, Jr.
In addition to his role at Chertoff Group, Mr. Chertoff is also senior of counsel at Covington & Burling LLP, and a member of the firm’s White Collar Defense and Investigations practice group.
Dr. Ann Cavoukian is recognized as one of the world’s leading privacy experts. She is presently the Distinguished Expert-in-Residence, leading the Privacy by Design Centre of Excellence and is also a Senior Fellow of the Ted Rogers Leadership Centre at Ryerson University. Appointed as the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario, Canada in 1997, Dr. Cavoukian served an unprecedented three terms as Commissioner. During that time, she elevated the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner from a novice regulatory body to a first-class agency, known around the world for its cutting edge innovation and leadership. There she created Privacy by Design, a framework that seeks to proactively embed privacy into the design specifications of information technologies, networked infrastructure and business practices, thereby achieving the strongest protection possible.
In October 2010, regulators at the International Conference of Data Protection Authorities and Privacy Commissioners unanimously passed a Resolution recognizing Privacy by Design as an essential component of fundamental privacy protection. This was followed by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s inclusion of Privacy by Design as one of three recommended practices for protecting online privacy – a major validation of its significance. Since then, PbD has been translated into 39 languages, giving it a true global presence. Dr. Cavoukian is the author of two books, “The Privacy Payoff: How Successful Businesses Build Customer Trust"with Tyler Hamilton and “Who Knows: Safeguarding Your Privacy in a Networked World, external link” with Don Tapscott. She has also written numerous articles and Op-Eds, and has been invited to sit on many Boards.