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16-year-old hacker controlled 75,000 computers

يحافظ الاقتصاد الرقمي على 5.1 مليون وظيفة في الولايات المتحدة

A 16-year-old boy, resident in Tenerife (Spain), is accused of infecting 75,000 computers with which he carried out massive attacks on several web pages. Arrested by Spanish authorities, he will be responsible for the crime of «damage to computer systems» .

The minor’s goal – a self-taught person with regard to information technology that officially dedicated himself to Webdesign – was to prove the vulnerability of the sites, according to local press reports.

According to information released by the police, the investigation began in late June, when the Guardia Civil de Barcelona received a report of a DDos (Distributed Denial of Service) attack on elhacker.net, which had been blocked after receiving more of 12 million visits in a few minutes – when the average daily visits to the site is 100 thousand.

Allegedly, the hacker, who gave his nickname N3ptun0, resorted to a Trojan horse, created by himself, which he disseminated to computers around the world, using a YouTube video as bait. The attracted Internet users were then invited to download the images, which triggered the installation of the Trojan. Once on the computer, the virus also spread through the user’s contacts on Messenger.

The computers were under the control of the young man, who created a network of zombie PCs spread across different countries. This allowed him to schedule combined attacks, in which all machines tried to access the same website at five-second intervals, causing the collapse of pages like elhacker.net – which (ironically) is intended to disseminate information about computer security – and several forums and servers dedicated to the game GTA San Andreas.

Asked by the authorities, he proved to be a self-taught person, who about three years ago had started looking for information in this area. The justification for the attacks is that they are a «challenge».