On August 28, the United Kingdom’s National Crime Agency announced the arrest of six teenagers, ranging in age from 15 to 18, for launching distributed denial of service attacks against multiple websites. The attacks were carried out using an attack tool created by Lizard Squad, the group behind denial of service attacks on gaming networks and the 8Chan imageboard site last winter. Called Lizard Stresser, the tool exploited compromised home routers, using them as a robot army against targeted sites and services.
The six arrested “are suspected of maliciously deploying Lizard Stresser, having bought the tool using alternative payment services such as Bitcoin in a bid to remain anonymous,” an NCA spokesperson wrote in an official statement on the case. “Organizations believed to have been targeted by the suspects include a leading national newspaper, a school, gaming companies, and a number of online retailers.” Those sites, according to a source that spoke with Bloomberg Business, included Microsoft’s Xbox Live, Sony’s Playstation network, and Amazon.com.
The timing of the attacks wasn’t mentioned by NCA. However, the user database of Lizard Stresser was leaked in January of this year. The NCA has been investigating individuals listed in the database and has identified a substantial number of them living in the UK. “Officers are also visiting approximately 50 addresses linked to individuals registered on the Lizard Stresser website, but who are not currently believed to have carried out attacks,” the NCA spokesperson noted. “A third of the individuals identified are under the age of 20, and the activity forms part of the NCA’s wider work to address younger people at risk of entering into serious forms of cyber crime.”