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Australian police arrest leader of hacking group

The federal forces in Australia have arrested the vocal, self proclaimed leader of Lulzsec. A hacking collective well known across the globe for their high profile attacks on leading organisations. They even shut down the Central Intelligence Agency’s public web site in 2011.

The Australian Federal Police said that they have arrested the 24 year old Australian on Tuesday night. The as yet unnamed man may face up to 10 years in prison if convicted on two hacking related charges. He is said to have abused his position as an I.T. Specialist in a Sydney based company to get access to sensitive information from clients, even the Australian government.

Glen McEwen, manager of cybercrime operations at the Australian Federal Police, said in a news conference on Wednesday morning “The A.F.P. has zero tolerance for this kind of behavior. There were no denials of his claims of being the leader.

The A.F.P. believes this man’s skill sets and access to this kind of information presented a considerable risk to Australian society.”

Lulzsec were said to have formed out of Anonymous, another hacktivist group said to be motivated by ideals as opposed to financial gain. They were responsible for cyber attacks on Nintendo, Sony Pictures, UK newspaper The Sun and others.

The Australian Police had said that the suspect – with an online name of ‘Aush0k’ has repeatedly said he was the groups leader on various forums. His activities online brought him to the attention of international law enforcement authorities before his arrest, according to federal police.

Last year Lulzsec’s previous leader Hector Xavier Monsegur, known online as Sabu was providing federal law enforcement officials with information on the hacking group members, as part of his plea bargain following an arrest in 2011.

American Cody Kretsinger, was sentenced last week by a Los Angeles court. He landed one year in prison for his role in a Lulzsec attack on Sony Pictures. Kretsinger, known online as ‘Recursion’ also pleaded guilty as part of an agreement with prosecutors.

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