19-year-old hacker arrested in UK

6 Feb 2003

Police in the UK have arrested a 19-year-old hacker alleged to have created a virulent computer worm known as the TK worm estimated to have infected 18,000 computers across the globe and causing damage estimated at £5.5m sterling.

The arrest of the teenager by Durham constabulary coincided with the arrest of another 21-year-old unemployed man in the UK as well as a third individual in Illinois where additional evidence was seized.

The arrests followed a joint investigation by the UK’s National High-Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU) and the US multi-agency Computer and Technology Crime High-Tech Response Team (CATCH).

The individuals were understood to be part of a group responsible for creating the TK worm that was responsible for damaging more than 18,000 computers around the world and costing businesses £5.5m sterling to repair.

The malicious self-replicating worm connected computers over the internet to computers under the control of the group which called itself ‘THr34t-Krew’. The group could then send commands to the infected computers ranging from scanning other computers for vulnerabilities and starting denial of service attacks on websites.

By John Kennedy