21 Jun 2011

British teen arrested in connection with LulzSec attacks

British teenager Ryan Cleary was arrested today at his home in Essex. American and U.K. authorities investigating recent cyber attacks carried out by the hacker group LulzSec said they believe Cleary is an important member of the organization.

LulzSec has tweeted that Cleary is not part of their group, though one of his servers hosted some chatrooms used by them.

The arrest of 19-year-old Cleary follows the arrests earlier this month of three purported members of the hacker group Anonymous, which LulzSec recently announced it has teamed up with to launch an "AntiSec" campaign against government websites. In the last month, LulzSec claimed responsibility for hacks of the CIA and U.S. Senate websites, as well as the site of FBI-affiliated company InfraGard.

In light of such attacks, the American government, the European Union and NATO have all recently stepped up their rhetoric regarding cyber criminals, with the U.S. and E.U. both floating the possibility of retaliatory military strikes. But this approach could be difficult against targets like Cleary, who was a teenager living in his family home.