Notorious Sony Hacker Lands a Developer Gig at… Facebook?

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If you were a maturing technology company, where would you look to recruit top-tier engineering talent? College campuses? Craigslist? LinkedIn?

Try the hacker world. George Hotz, 21, isn’t only the young man responsible for famously unlocking the iPhone in 2007, but he’s also been maligned as Sony’s public enemy #1 when he blogged instructions for how to install third party software on the PlayStation 3 after some crafty reverse engineering back in early 2010.

(MORE: Brazen Hacker Group Lulzsec Says It’s Disbanding)

The resulting lawsuit against Hotz is, in fact, what made hacker group Anonymous go after Sony in the first place, which eventually ended up costing them $24 billion in damages though the two parties reportedly settled out of court.

But prior to his legal dilemmas, Hotz’s prodigious talent hardly went under the radar. In fact, previous projects have garnered him his fair share of worldwide recognition; in 2008, PC World named him one of their “Top 10 Overachievers Under 21” for being the first person to crack Apple’s iPhone.

Now, he’s landed a job as a software engineer at Facebook where he’s apparently been working since May to help the company develop its long-anticipated iPad app.

A previous Forbes report stated that Hotz once wanted to be a neuroscientist to “hack” the brain, and he’s also been courted by other considerably powerful tech companies, even working briefly at Google.

Facebook’s move could indicate a shifting paradigm in the way technology companies view would-be hackers, and begs the question: Is talent still talent even if it’s misguided?

Now that Lulzsec’s apparently disbanding, perhaps companies can take a look into harnessing all that riotous energy to develop things like, I don’t know, better security for their customers?

Just a thought, and maybe a silly one. I doubt we’ll see “1337 hacker” scrawled proudly on résumés just yet.

(via Make Online)

MORE: Facebook Finally Readies Its Own iPad App