I’ll be the first to admit, my computer knowledge is very minimal. I can get online, play movies, use Microsoft, and that’s the gist of it. So, when I got the opportunity to get into the mind of computer whiz Tou Yang, I was very eager for this interview.
Tou has lead a very interesting life in front of the computer. A life that lead him to serve time behind bars and almost lose those who are important to him. It’s about a young man who wondered off the path, not because he was evil, but because he had a skill, a skill that could exploit websites, servers, and other targets throughout the online world.
I got the chance to talk with Tou about his rebel past, what he’s doing now, and what he hopes people can learn from his mistakes.
Hmoodle: I’m here with computer whiz Tou Yang. First off, let me thank you for being a part of Hmoodle.
Tou: No problem, thanks for having me.
Hmoodle: Before we get started can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself?
Tou: My Name is Tou Yang. I am white, Hmong, German, Irish, and Italian. I am currently twenty-one years old and my basic hobbies are just playing video games, playing the guitar, and working on computer related projects. I currently own a site called www.toukyang.com.
Hmoodle: I have to say, from what I’ve read in your bio, you’ve had quite an interesting life. Let’s begin with the early stages of life. Were you always computer/tech savvy? Was this something you were taught?
Tou: I was self taught, and I really wasn’t into computers until I hit high school. It just amazes me how I could do so much with it and I learned to use it to benefit myself.
Hmoodle: At what age did you realize you had something special?
Tou: I would have to be around the age of fifteen because that was when I started learning all kinds of stuff. Then when I was eighteen I became popular in the online world within the many hacking communities.
Hmoodle: Did you ever feel like an outcast because of this skill?
Tou: Yes, I will admit it, also it did ruin my life for a long time. Everybody doubted me, but I still held onto what I loved doing.
Hmoodle: You mentioned earlier about being popular amongst the hacker community, how did the transition from computer whiz to hacker come about?
Tou:I am both I guess you can say. I started of hacking and became well known for hacking gaming sites and servers. Then from there I created a program which was called gXploit which is actually ranked #1 for Google search for that and you will be directed to my Youtube channel. It allowed me to hack servers which were hosted by Call Of Duty and many major gaming servers. This made me one thousand dollars within the first week of selling it.
This lead to many problems and legal issues. After I got locked up I decided to go white hat (good side or hero in the computer world) to help people with the many security issues within their sites, or just help remove viruses, and other computer issues. I did this because when it comes to computers people who knew me first thought was to contact me. I had over fifty friends always asking me about my computer stuff like they are just my customers. <laughs>
Hmoodle: I’m sure you participated in lots of illegal activities during this time. Were you ever afraid to get caught?
Tou: I was never afraid more of aware what could happen. I was supposed to get 25 years when they put in me behind bars but they knew I was talented so they let me out. I even got sponsored by Microsoft, which they gave me full access to msdn.com allowing me to have all of the Microsoft products for free. MSDN actually cost $15k if you want to be part of the membership which I actually got for free. I feel really happy about it.
Hmoodle: Were your friends and family aware of what you were doing?
Tou: They were aware but none of them approved it. They really disliked me for it.
Hmoodle: I’m guessing it was hard on a lot of your personal relationships.
Tou: Yes it has, it led me getting kicked out of the house, where I had to live on my own. It was just really hard on all my relationships. I’m not allowed to have a job (legally) or join any military forces.
Hmoodle: What were some of your favorite hacks?
Tou: My favorite hacks would be simple Network System Penetrations. From there you can hack databases and gain access to usernames, emails, passwords, and even much more stuff.
Hmoodle: When did you finally decide to use your computer skills for the betterment versus risking your freedom?
Tou: When I started to think about myself and how I wanted to make a better me; I always wanted to help people which led me to creating my website www.toukyang.com.
Hmoodle: We’ve focused on your hacking skills, but what other computer skills do you have, and which do enjoy the most?
Tou: I would say Web Development and Online Marketing. There are many things I can do online, but it’s just so much out there and it confuses me. <laughs>. I’m currently also working on an application that allows you to read Manga from your own desktop even though I don’t like Manga. It is just something for me to do. I just think about something and do it.
Hmoodle: What have you been doing recently with those skills?
Tou: I been making money off of playing video games and creating websites. I just recently got a donation of $320 for doing hard work and offering good services to my customers. If I am not out hanging with my best friends then I am just on the computer every day for about ten plus hours.
Hmoodle: What would be your dream job?
Tou: Making money while playing games. While I’m not playing the games then developing a bot that can play the game itself.
Hmoodle: Is there ever a time where you feel like doing some hacking just for fun, if so do you give in or let it pass. If so, do you have a way of not giving in?
Tou: There are many times I want to. It’s very tempting because you see the flaw and you want to exploit it, but I know better not to get back. If I just do it once then I will be back in on hacking again.
Hmoodle: What kind of advice would you give to someone in their youth who has the type of skills you have, and is thinking of jumping in into the world of hacking?
Tou: Don’t do it unless you are willing to put in five years of hard work, no social life, and no family support.
Hmoodle: Would you change anything about your experiences?
Tou: I wouldn’t change a thing.
Hmoodle: This looks to be a great place to end the interview. Do you have any last words for our readers?
Tou: I would like to say thanks for interviewing me and I hope you readers enjoy what I have to say. There wasn’t much because I’m kind of not really good with words. <laughs>
I want to thank Tou for taking the time to interview with us at Hmoodle. It took us awhile to get this done, so your patience is much appreciated. I hope that we can all learn from Tou, regardless of the mistakes we’ve made, we can definitely move on from them.
Be sure to check out Tou’s site www.toukyang.com
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