Briton admits to router hack that DDoSed Deutsche Telekom

Tells German court it was unintentional


An as yet unnamed 29-year-old pleaded guilty on Friday to charges relating to the hijacking of more than 1.25 million Deutsche Telekom routers, according to reports in the German press.

German news agency DPA and others quoted a court spokesman as saying the accused, who pleaded guilty to "attempted computer sabotage", had "registered under the names 'Peter Parker' and 'Spiderman'".

Deutsche Telekom's routers became infected with a modified version of the Mirai IoT malware late last year, causing over a million pounds' worth of damage, the firm said at the time.

The man reportedly told the court (through a translator) that he'd been hired by a Liberian ISP to take out local competition in the African country for the relatively modest fee of $10,000 for a “good start into married life”.

He claimed the ISP hadn't asked him to hack Deutsche Telekom, but rather to create a botnet that would cripple a competing business.

The self-taught programmer had been "studying computers since childhood", but had not had any specialist training, the DPA reported.

In practice, his efforts had knocked DT's routers offline, creating net outages in German homes and businesses in the process last November.

The Deutsche Telekom attack came a month after Mirai source code leaked online.

The suspect was arrested in a London airport at the end of February by police acting on an international arrest warrant and extradited to Germany.

His sentencing hearing before a Cologne court is scheduled for this Friday, 28 July. ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • Prisons transcribe private phone calls with inmates using speech-to-text AI

    Plus: A drug designed by machine learning algorithms to treat liver disease reaches human clinical trials and more

    In brief Prisons around the US are installing AI speech-to-text models to automatically transcribe conversations with inmates during their phone calls.

    A series of contracts and emails from eight different states revealed how Verus, an AI application developed by LEO Technologies and based on a speech-to-text system offered by Amazon, was used to eavesdrop on prisoners’ phone calls.

    In a sales pitch, LEO’s CEO James Sexton told officials working for a jail in Cook County, Illinois, that one of its customers in Calhoun County, Alabama, uses the software to protect prisons from getting sued, according to an investigation by the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

    Continue reading
  • Battlefield 2042: Please don't be the death knell of the franchise, please don't be the death knell of the franchise

    Another terrible launch, but DICE is already working on improvements

    The RPG Greetings, traveller, and welcome back to The Register Plays Games, our monthly gaming column. Since the last edition on New World, we hit level cap and the "endgame". Around this time, item duping exploits became rife and every attempt Amazon Games made to fix it just broke something else. The post-level 60 "watermark" system for gear drops is also infuriating and tedious, but not something we were able to address in the column. So bear these things in mind if you were ever tempted. On that note, it's time to look at another newly released shit show – Battlefield 2042.

    I wanted to love Battlefield 2042, I really did. After the bum note of the first-person shooter (FPS) franchise's return to Second World War theatres with Battlefield V (2018), I stupidly assumed the next entry from EA-owned Swedish developer DICE would be a return to form. I was wrong.

    The multiplayer military FPS market is dominated by two forces: Activision's Call of Duty (COD) series and EA's Battlefield. Fans of each franchise are loyal to the point of zealotry with little crossover between player bases. Here's where I stand: COD jumped the shark with Modern Warfare 2 in 2009. It's flip-flopped from WW2 to present-day combat and back again, tried sci-fi, and even the Battle Royale trend with the free-to-play Call of Duty: Warzone (2020), which has been thoroughly ruined by hackers and developer inaction.

    Continue reading
  • American diplomats' iPhones reportedly compromised by NSO Group intrusion software

    Reuters claims nine State Department employees outside the US had their devices hacked

    The Apple iPhones of at least nine US State Department officials were compromised by an unidentified entity using NSO Group's Pegasus spyware, according to a report published Friday by Reuters.

    NSO Group in an email to The Register said it has blocked an unnamed customers' access to its system upon receiving an inquiry about the incident but has yet to confirm whether its software was involved.

    "Once the inquiry was received, and before any investigation under our compliance policy, we have decided to immediately terminate relevant customers’ access to the system, due to the severity of the allegations," an NSO spokesperson told The Register in an email. "To this point, we haven’t received any information nor the phone numbers, nor any indication that NSO’s tools were used in this case."

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021