German Suspect Confesses To Mass Data Leak

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20 year old student admits he was behind massive data leak of German politicians, celebrities and public figures

A German man has reportedly made a “comprehensive” confession that he was behind the data breach that affected hundreds of high profile people in that country.

German police said that the 20 year old man is still a student and living at home with his parents.

It comes after it was revealed last Friday that personal data belonging to senior figures from every political party in the German establishment, except the far-right AfD party, had been leaked.

Angela Merkel © 360b shutterstock

German leak

The data had been leaked in the form of an advent calendar during December 2018, but only came to light late last week.

The Hamburg-based Twitter account @_0rbit (which had 18,000 followers) began posting links on a daily basis in early December to the data.

At first the data belonged to German celebrities and journalists, but on 20 December the Twitter account also began posting information from German politicians, including personal phone numbers and addresses, internal party documents, credit card details and private chats.

Among those caught up in the data leak are German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Cabinet members and the German president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

Letters both to and from Merkel were among the documents leaked, and reportedly showed email addresses and a fax number.

The German government denied sensitive information from the chancellory had been leaked, but said that they were taking this incident very seriously.

Suspect arrested

And now an unknown male has according to the BBC, made a “comprehensive” confession to German federal criminal police (BKA) that he was behind a data breach.

The suspect said he acted alone and out of annoyance at statements made by the public figures he attacked.

He is supposedly co-operating with German authorities and led the police to evidence they may not have found without help.

Police are also still apparently investigating seized computer hardware.

In a statement, the BKA said he was detained after a search of his home in the state of Hesse on Sunday. He has been charged with spying and the unauthorised publication of data.

The suspect has been released “due to a lack of grounds for detention”, German police reportedly said.

The suspect apparently taught himself computer skills and had no formal training in computer science.

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Author: Tom Jowitt
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