Hackers Around the World: A ‘Half Mad’ Nepali Hacktivist

he "Hackers around the world" series begins with the story of a Nepali hacker calledArdhapagal. Even though he’s still young and hacktivism is a relatively new concept for him, his actions already raise the interest of local authorities.
 Check out the interview to learn how he began his hacking life, what is the significance of his name, and how come he’s not afraid of getting caught by local authorities.

Softpedia: First of all, tell me, what do you consider yourself? A black hat, gray hat, a hacktivist maybe?

Ardhapagal: I consider myself to be a hacktivist.

Softpedia: Ardhapagal is an interesting name. Where does it come from? Does it have any meaning in Nepalese?

Ardhapagal: It has another funny story. 

When I was in school at standard 9, we had a group of school friends, travelling in the same school bus, while coming and going from school. So, they said I used to laugh alone, staring outside the window of bus. So they named me Ardha Pagal, ardha=half and pagal= mad, meaning ‘half mad.’

Afterall it’s related with school life, everyone’s moments of pure happiness and joy.

Softpedia: How old are you and when did you start hacking?

Ardhapagal: I am 19 years old and I started hacking when I was 16.

Softpedia: Where did you find out about hacking and how did you learn how to hack?

Ardhapagal: Well, this is quite humiliating because, the reason I got into hacking was… There was a girl, whom I had a crush on, so I wanted to hack her Facebook account so I could see her messages. Then gradually I became more interested in hacking.

I started reading e-books and every other resource that was available. I got very deep into learning hacking, then after 2 years of learning, I got to be a super moderator on a hacking forum. Then, I became part of the hacktivist movement.

Softpedia: Are you part of a group or are you working alone?

Ardhapagal: Well, I had some teams at the beginning, but then when I started hacking for the Nepali people, I didn’t find anyone who could work with me. So I work alone at the moment, though there are several other hackers, who work under me.

I help them because I want hackers in Nepal to grow, so I encourage them by involving them in my hacks and by giving them a credit. They are very encouraged when they see their names being given credit for a hack.

Softpedia: Do you operate worldwide, or do you mainly fight for the rights of the Nepali people?

Ardhapagal: I mainly operate for the rights of Nepali people, because there are enough people to look after the world. But, then again, if there are some movements that I consider to be “injusticeful”, then surely you can find me there.

Softpedia: I read somewhere that you retired from the hacking business. Is this true? If not, are you ever going to retire?

Ardhapagal: The name Ardhapagal was a name I had been using since I started hacking from my very first day. Of course, it had lots of traces to follow, and recently I have been getting lots of warnings from Nepal Cyber law. SO, I am quitting the name "Ardhapagal", not hacking. My protests will always stand by.

I am abandoning this name for some security reasons. And about hacking, I am never quitting. Only losers quit. In fact, I have started hacking with another name.

Softpedia: What about your daily life? What can you tell me about that?

Ardhapagal: Currently, I’m not rich, but I’m now poor either. I’m somewhere in between, but when I was a little kid, we had a weak financial condition, so I grew with lots of compromises.

My dad is hell of a strict guy, so even when I was using computers, I had some certain time limits. Even now, when I sit in front of my desktop at late night, I switch off my lights and make as little noise as possible.

I grew up in a conservative family, which believes going to school and colleges and getting good marks is called education and the only way of learning.

Softpedia: What is your current level of education and what schools did you graduate so far?

Ardhapagal: I am currently doing my bachelors in IT, it’s my first year though. I finished highschool 2 years back, but then I spend those two years learning. And to be honest, I was never good at my studies.

Softpedia: Tell me more about the fact that you are wanted by the authorities.

Ardhapagal: My hacktivism includes governments and evil corporations that exist in Nepal. So, I started defacing their websites and leaking their private information making them feel humiliated, breaking the security they were proud of.

But then, as I already said, I had been using the name 'Ardhapagal' since I started my hackings from the very beginning so they started tracking me down. At first, they sent me some emails warning about my activities, but I didn’t give a f*** about them. 

They somehow managed to get my private cellphone number and gave me a verbal warning, stating serious actions shall be taken if I don’t stop right now. They even told me to shut down my blogs.

Softpedia: So they know your identity. Aren’t you afraid of the consequences?

Ardhapagal: Sadly, yes, they do know my identity, but I’m not afraid because I know my rights. No f***ing government can take an action against me without some proof. And the name Ardhapagal is gone, and no-one else knows my other name.

Softpedia: So isn’t hacking declared illegal in Nepal, or how come authorities can't do anything? Is it just because they don't have evidence against you?

Ardhapagal: Yes, hacking is illegal in Nepal, but then again, I could swear that the Nepali cyber law department has some f***ing noob computer engineers who don’t know sh*t about IT security. And they are so corrupted, that they will only sit in their offices, getting their salaries and doing absolutely nothing.

And that’s the same with almost all other government officials.

My Official Website: http://dthings.ucoz.ro/

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About Doru Somcutean

Hello, my name is Somcutean Doru and I'm from Romania.

I really like to read reviews and see what's new about technology, on D-BLOG I share with you articles/reviews that I find interesting. I also write some reviews in romanian...

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