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This nOde last updated June 4th, 2005 and is
(3 Ak'bal (Night) / 1 Zots (Bat) - 3/260 - 126.96.36.199.3)
dumpster diving /dump'-ster di:'-ving/ n. 1. The practice of sifting refuse from an office or technical installation to extract confidential data, especially security-compromising information ('dumpster' is an Americanism for what is elsewhere called a 'skip'). Back in AT&T's monopoly days, before paper shredders became common office equipment, phone phreaks used to organize regular dumpster runs against phone company plants and offices. Discarded and damaged copies of AT&T internal manuals taught them much. The technique is still rumored to be a favorite of crackers operating against careless targets. 2. The practice of raiding the dumpsters behind buildings where producers and/or consumers of high-tech equipment are located, with the expectation (usually justified) of finding discarded by still-valuable equipment to be nursed back to health in some hacker's den. Experienced dumpster-divers not infrequently accumulate basements full of moldering (but still potentially useful) cruft.
- _The New Hacker's
bay area punk rock late eighties and early nineties - popularized dumpster diving as a fun form of expression. the meme propagated through DIY 'zines, and in light of the fun-loving vibe of the gilman street scene, it was a great way for down and out punks to socialize and get some surprisingly useful stuff out of the strategy. the meme spread nationally and perhaps globally, networking tactics to obtain free food, clothes, furniture, etc... the weird thing about all of this is that no one even bothers looking. it's too "dirty", but it really isn't, and the stuff you can find, at least in the states, illustrates what a wasteful throw away society we really are... it simply is much more convenient to throw it away then to try and sell it or give it away... that is, until e-bay came along... - @Om* 3/25/01