Arrest Made in Cyber Attacks

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

LONDON (AP) - A 19-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion
of involvement with cyber attacks on Sony and the CIA website,
British police said Tuesday.

The arrest took place following a joint operation by its Internet crimes unit and the FBI, the Metropolitan Police said. The FBI declined to comment.

British police would not say if the suspect was tied to the Lulz
Security hacking collective, which has claimed responsibility for
recent high-profile attacks, but confirmed that a computer seized
in the operation will be examined for Sony data. Police declined to
identify the suspect because he has not been charged with a crime.

Lulz had boasted of successfully hacking Sony in addition to
subsequent attacks on the CIA web page and the U.S. Senate computer system. The hackers recently called for "war" on governments that control the Internet.

Although little is known about Lulz, hacker collectives are
typically loose networks with diffuse supporters in more than one
location, so an arrest could do little to bring down an
organization and even encourage supporters to carry on a group's
cause.

The teenager was arrested in the commuter town of Wickford,
about 35 miles (55 kilometers) northeast of London, late Monday on
suspicion of hacking and fraud offenses and taken to a central
London police station for questioning, police said.

Police said the arrest resulted from an investigation into
network intrusions and distributed denial-of-service attacks
against "a number of international business and intelligence
agencies by what is believed to be the same hacking group."

Officers are conducting forensic examinations on "a significant
amount of material" found in the search of a home following the
arrest.

Lulz has taken credit for hacking into Sony Corp. - where more
than 100 million user accounts were compromised - and defacing the
PBS website after the U.S. public television station aired a
documentary seen as critical of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
The hackers also say they are responsible for attacks on the CIA
website and the U.S. Senate computer system.

Most recently, Lulz said it had compromised the security of more
than 1,000 accounts of an FBI partner organization and brought down
the website of Britain's FBI equivalent, the Serious Organized
Crime Agency.

The group has taken to taunting victims of its attacks on
Twitter using the handle "LulzSec." The Twitter account appeared
to make light of the news about Tuesday's arrest, giving no
indication anyone from the group was involved.

"Seems the glorious leader of LulzSec got arrested, it's all
over now... wait... we're all still here!," the group Tweeted
Tuesday afternoon.

On Monday, Lulz Security issued a statement calling for a united
hacker effort against governments and organizations that control
the Internet.

The group said it was teaming with fellow hacker collective
Anonymous, and encouraged others to fight corruption and attack any
government or agency that "crosses their path" including banks
and other "high-ranking establishments."

Anonymous is a group of online activists that has claimed
responsibility for attacking companies online such as Visa,
MasterCard and PayPal over their severing of ties with WikiLeaks
following that group's release of troves of sensitive documents.
Anonymous also led a campaign against the Church of Scientology.
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Associated Press writer Meera Selva contributed to this report


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