Lulzsec Denies Arrested Suspect Was Hacking Leader
A 19-year-old alleged Lulzsec member has been arrested by British police in joint-operation with the FBI
Police in Essex have arrested a 19-year-old man allegedly connected with the Lulzsec hacktivist group – but the group has denied he was its leader.
In an intelligence led joint-operation between British police and the FBI, the man was arrested in Wickford, Essex, on suspicion of Computer Misuse Act, and Fraud Act offences. He is currently being held at a central London police station for questioning.
News of the arrest follows attacks on the Serious and Organised Crime Agency’s (SOCA)website and a Pastebin post claiming to be from Lulzsec – since denied via Twitter – that the UK’s 2011 Census data had been stolen.
A statement from the Metropolitan Police said: “Officers from the Metropolitan Police Central e-Crime Unit (PCeU) have arrested a 19-year-old man in a pre-planned intelligence-led operation.
“The arrest follows an investigation into network intrusions and Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks against a number of international business and intelligence agencies by what is believed to be the same hacking group.
“Searches at a residential address in Wickford, Essex, following the arrest last night have led to the examination of a significant amount of material. These forensic examinations remain ongoing.
“The PCeU was assisted by officers from Essex Police and have been working in co-operation with the FBI.”
Lulzsec has denied claims made elsewhere that the man arrested is part of its leadership, tweeting: “Seems the glorious leader of Lulzsec got arrested, it’s all over now… wait… we’re all still here!”
The hacktivist group has propelled itself into the headlines recently by boistrously claiming responsibility for a number of high-profile attacks against the websites of SOCA, the CIA and the US Senate, as well as security breaches at Sony and Nintendo.
This is the latest development in a busy few days for Lulzsec as the group yesterday announced a partnership with the Anonymous group, famous for supporting Wikileaks, and the start of a campaign against governments and banks.
For a group dedicated to ‘lulz’, ‘Operation Anti-Security’ or ‘AntiSec’ explicitly aimed at governments marked a significant change in direction and it looked yesterday as if SOCA, the UK’s FBI-equivalent was its first victim.
Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant at Sophos said: “The controversial Lulzsec group has been playing a dangerous game – their Twitter account, which has more than 220,000 followers, has become increasingly vocal – embarrassing computer crime authorities and large organisations around the world with their attacks.
“There has been much speculation recently regarding who might be behind Lulzsec – if the group has now been cracked then it will send a strong message to others thinking about engaging in their own hacks or denial-of-service attacks.”