Former hacker and US extradition target Gary McKinnon has found a new career as a search engine optimisation expert.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s “natural” or un-paid (“organic”) search results.
McKinnon – who successfully fought a 10-year campaign against extradition to the US over charges he hacked into Pentagon systems – has launched Small SEO, which specialises in making sure small businesses appear prominently in search results. The 48-year-old Scot is selling his services for £40 a hour.
The British hacker readily admitted breaking into the Pentagon systems to look for evidence of a “UFO coverup” and related topics. US authorities claimed his actions had caused $800K in damages, describing his actions as the “biggest military computer hack of all time”, a claim that always looked wide of the mark. McKinnon supporters consistently contested the supposed damage assessment.
Home Secretary Theresa May withdrew an extradition order against the 48-year-old Brit on medical and human rights grounds in October 2012. Psychiatrists warned there was a risk that McKinnon, who suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome and depression, would commit suicide rather than accept the grim prospect of extradition and subsequent trial in the US.