CyberCrimeSecurity

Deutsche Telekom Cyber Attack ‘Mastermind’ Arrested At London Airport

Sam Pudwell joined Silicon UK as a reporter in December 2016. As well as being the resident Cloud aficionado, he covers areas such as cyber security, government IT and sports technology, with the aim of going to as many events as possible.

The police plan to extradite him to Germany where he could face up to ten years in prison

A 29-year-old British man suspected of being behind the cyber attack which affected 900,000 Deutsche Telekom customers has been arrested at Luton Airport.

The German telecoms giant was forced to roll out a software update in November after nearly a million of its customers across the country were either cut off, or had issues with their broadband service.

The UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) today said it has arrested the man under charges of computer sabotage on behalf of Germany’s federal criminal police force (BKA).

DDoS attack

Attack suspect

Cologne public prosecutor Dr Daniel Vollmert said the man is “accused of being the mastermind behind the attack”, with the police planning to extradite him to Germany where he could face up to ten years in prison

He supposedly planned to hack the Deutsche Telekom router in order to integrate in to a networked “botnet” for cyber criminal activities and prosecutors allege that he tried to sell the botnet on the dark web “attack scenarios like so-called DDoS attacks”.

At the time, Deutsche Telekom was able to mitigate the attack by instructing customers to disconnect their routers and only restart them after carrying out a software update.

Attacks such as this were extremely prevalent throughout 2016, as businesses struggled to come to terms with a growing attack surface and the increased sophistication of cyber attacks, emphasising a need for next generation security products.

DDoS attacks in particular are a serious threat to businesses. Earlier this month a suspected DDoS attack took down the Austrian Parliament website and the same type of attack was deemed responsible for an outage at Lloyds Banking Group in January that left customers unable to access online banking services for three days.

Corero Network Security warned businesses to prepare for bigger and badder DDoS attacks in 2017 and, if the first two months of the year are anything to go by, this prediction looks set to come true.

Think you’re a cyber security guru? Try our quiz!