UPDATED: Teen charged as LulzSec inquiries continue


A Shetland teenager suspected of being involved in hacktivist group LulzSec has been charged for a variety of cyber crime offences.

Jake Davis, 18, was charged on five counts, one of them being a conspiracy to carry out a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) website.

SOCA was forced to take its website offline in June. LulzSec claimed to have hit the site with a DDoS strike.

The teen was arrested last week, as police said they had taken Davis in under suspicion of being a spokesperson for LulzSec, known as Topiary.

Davis will appear in custody at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court today.

The arrest came as part of a Police Central e-Crime Unit (PCeU) investigation.

Another teenager, 19 year old Ryan Cleary, was arrested and charged earlier this year for five offences, including the strike on SOCA.

In July, a coordinated FBI investigation into hacktivist activities led to 21 arrests in the US, the UK and the Netherlands. A 16 year old male in London was detained.

Some experts believe arrests will do little to harm the hacktivists' activity. In recent weeks, Anonymous and LulzSec have hit a variety of organisations, including NATO and News International.

Taking a different tack, Anonymous began calling for people to ditch their PayPal accounts last week. Despite Anonymous claiming the campaign had seen thousands leave PayPal, the eBay subsidiary said it hadn't seen anything out of the ordinary.

"We haven't seen any changes to our normal operations (including account opening and closing)," a spokesperson said.

UPDATED: Davis, who appeared at court earlier today, has been released on bail and will be staying at his mother's in Spalding, Lincolnshire.

The teenager has been banned from the internet and told to wear a tag to keep him in check with a 10pm to 7am curfew.

Meanwhile, Anonymous has started up a 'Free Topiary' campaign, posting pictures on Twitter of the alleged LulzSec hacker coming out of court.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.