Teenager who hacked TalkTalk website given rehabilitation order.
A teenage boy who hacked into TalkTalk’s website in a £42 million cyber-attack has been given a year-long rehabilitation order and had his iPhone seized.
The 17-year-old discovered a security flaw in the website using “legitimate software” and later shared the hacked data online “to show off to his mates”, Norwich Youth Court heard.
BUT DESPITE NOT HACKING INTO THE WEBSITE FOR PERSONEL GAIN
But despite not hacking into the website for personal gain, his breach exposed the website’s vulnerability and allowed hackers target TalkTalk more than 14,000 times.
The personal data of nearly 160,000 people was accessed.
The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, admitted seven hacking offences and was sentenced on Tuesday.
Chairman of the bench Jean Bonnick: “Your IT skills will always be there – just use them legally in the future.”
Two of the charges related to the October 2015 TalkTalk hack and the rest relate to attacks on websites including Manchester University, Cambridge University and small family company Merit Badges.
Chris Brown, mitigating, defended the decision not to name the teenager and said: “Part of the work that’s ongoing is to draw him out of his bedroom and into the family and properly into the public arena, to someone who doesn’t hide behind a computer for nefarious purposes.
HE HAS ALREADY COMMITTED AN OFFENCE THAT HAS CHANGED HIS LIFE
“He has already committed an offence that has changed his life within his family, his home, his future prospects.
“I would ask you don’t expose that to the world for him to continue to bear that burden through his young life.”
After the hearing, Laura Tams, of the Crown Prosecution ServiceOrganised Crime Division, said: “This case involved the deliberate exposure of a security issue on the TalkTalk website which is used by thousands of people every day.”
The teenager must complete 24 hours of activities as part of the youth rehabilitation order, and he was ordered to pay £85 court costs and a £15 victim surcharge