Indonesia has one of the lowest computer ownership and Internet access levels in Asia, but is home to a growing community of intelligent and agile Internet users. While they expand their knowledge at universities and learn the skills necessary to read scores of programming languages, Indonesia's regulatory framework has lagged far behind. The result is a recipe for Internet misuse that the break-up of a US-based child pornography ring has brought into the open. Few local Internet users are surprised Indonesia has proved a useful base from which to run operations deemed illegal elsewhere, noting only that serious work is needed to close all manner of loopholes. Large communities of computer hackers, credit-card defrauders and 'white' hackers flourish in university cities such as Bandung and Jogjakarta. White hackers are those who penetrate programmes or Web sites and leave messages pointing out or even solving the security loopholes. The rest are bent either on mindless destruction, making money or spreading political propaganda. Wendy Setiawan, 15, became the first Indonesian to be arrested abroad for Web crime a year ago. Singapore's police picked him up for infiltrating the Web site of Singapore's Data Storage Institute. He escaped imprisonment only by paying a fine. His case provoked some soul-searching in Indonesia, and one monthly magazine, Latitudes, offered a run-down of the many groups and tricks involved in Indonesia's electronic underground. It included Hackerlink, a group of white hackers consisting largely of academics and white-collar workers. Then AntiHackerlink came along to undo the good work. Computer viruses from the early 1990s with names such as DenZuko, SuperNova and Macro Bandung Concept all came from Indonesia. In 1996, a Portuguese hacker called Toxyn focused on destroying government sites as a statement against Indonesia's occupation of the former Portuguese colony of East Timor. In response, 'patriotic' Indonesian hackers formed new groups to destroy Portuguese sites. 'Indonesian hackers have been keeping busy,' said Antariksa, who writes about the Internet for Latitudes magazine. 'Even though few of their deeds have caught the attention of the press . . . over the past year Indonesian hackers have infiltrated Web sites of a number of major corporations, including Bank Central Asia, SCTV [television station], Bank Tabungan Negara, Aetna Life and the Jakarta Stock Market.'