29 Apr 2013

Dutch Hacker Arrested for Spamhaus DDoS Attack

Spanish police arrested a Dutch hacker for allegedly breaching Spamhaus in the largest DDoS to date, according to the BBC. The 35-year-old man was handcuffed in Barcelona after a request from the Dutch public prosecutor.

The man is believed to be Sven Kamphuis, owner and manager of Dutch hosting provider Cyberbunker, who allegedly started the attack in late March after Spamhaus blocked servers hosted by his company. Cyberbunker touted itself as a firm that will host anything but child pornography and terrorism content.

The house where the hacker stayed was searched at the time of his arrest and Spanish police confiscated computers, phones and hard drives. The man will probably be soon extradited to the Netherlands.

"Spamhaus is delighted at the news that an individual has been arrested and is grateful to the Dutch police for the resources they have made available and the way they have worked with us," Spamhaus representatives told the BBC. "Spamhaus remains concerned about the way network resources are being exploited as they were in this incident due to the failure of network providers to implement best practice in security."

Problems started after the antispam organization blacklisted the provider for distributing unsolicited e-mail messages. This led Cyberbunker supporters to hit Spamhaus with 300 gigabits/second of data at the peak of the attack against upstream providers. As a comparison, ‘normal’ DDoS attacks against major banks run at about 50 gigabits/second.

Though the attack was huge, security specialists and the media proved it wasn’t as global as first thought.

“Little hint to the BBC and others: Western Europe is not the world,” Venture Beat wrote in late March. The Internet was slowed, especially in the UK, Germany and the Netherlands, where the fight between Cyberbunker and SpamHaus began.

The Dutch continue to investigate the cyber-attack along with British and American police.