An enterprising 18-year-old student has been charged with aiding and abetting cyber attacks on a range of popular websites and services, but running an online business selling malware tools.
The tools were used in attacks on T-Mobile, EE, Vodafone, O2, BBC, BT, Amazon, Netflix, Virgin Media and even the National Crime Agency.
Student Jack Chappell is accused of offering malware and denial of service (DoS) tools to for sale. He even ran an online help desk to support his customers.
West Midlands Police say that Chappell worked with an American national on some attacks, but doesn't explain which ones, and adds that he may have helped criminals attack millions of websites using some of the tools, including one assault in 2015 on NatWest Bank that crippled online services.
"It is claimed that Chappell supplied DoS software that crashes websites by flooding them with huge volumes of data − and ran an online helpdesk for hackers as part of the operation," explained the police.
The operation would appear to have been fairly large: West Midlands Regional Cyber Crime Unit worked with the Israeli Police, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Europol's European Cybercrime Centre as well.
"Chappell allegedly attacked the websites of T-Mobile, EE, Vodafone, O2, BBC, BT, Amazon, Netflix, Virgin Media and the National Crime Agency," said the police in a statement.
"He has been charged with impairing the operation of computers under the Computer Misuse Act, plus encouraging or assisting an offence and money laundering crime proceeds together with an American national."
Chappell is due to appear at Manchester Magistrates Court today. The police statement says that none of the attacks led to the theft or loss of personal data.
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