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But what exactly is different between this guy and some benevolent hacker? According to the linked article, the storyline sounds pretty much like the old "someone hacks a big corporation and tries to inform then, but gets ignored or accused of crime".

The difference is intent.

There is no way for us to know the intent. Shouldn't we just look at the actions? Was the stolen data misused somehow in this case? The article does not say so.

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