British police issue warning to internet hacktivists

Graham Cluley
@gcluley

The Metropolitan Police have taken the unusual step of using Twitter to send a message to anyone considering supporting internet attacks against companies and governments.

A message posted on the Met Police’s official Twitter account cautioned would-be hacktivists that engaging in denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, defacing websites or breaking into corporate databases is illegal.

In the past, hacktivists have compared their activities to legitimate civil disobedience – but such a view is not a defence if suspected hackers are brought to court.

Furthermore, the UK police warned, targeting bodies outside Great Britain does not mean that hackers cannot be prosecuted under British law.

In my opinion, it’s a timely warning by the Met Police, as it comes after a…

Read more in my article on the Naked Security website.

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Graham Cluley is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s when he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and is an international public speaker on the topic of computer security, hackers, and online privacy. Follow him on Twitter at @gcluley, or drop him an email.

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