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Aaron Sterritt: Co Antrim man accused of hacking gaming firms faces trial in 2024 | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #hacker

Aaron Sterritt (23), appearing at Antrim Crown Court, pleaded not guilty to each of the eight charges against him.

He is accused of targeting major organisations including Rockstar Games and Microsoft (Xbox Live) while he was still a teenager.

The eight charges include five counts of conspiring “with others not before the court, to commit unauthorised acts, namely a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack” on dates between December 2 and 21, 2016.

Sterritt, of Brookfield Garden, Ahoghill denied two offences of failing to comply with a notice to provide passwords and decryption keys on a laptop, two pen drives, an iPhone and a hard drive, allegedly between December 20, 2017 and January 18, 2018.

On a final count the alleged hacker also denied a single count of obtaining an article, namely a malicious code from the ”Blazingfast” server, intending to use it under the computer misuse act.

None of the alleged facts were opened in court but the five denial of service attack charges allege that Sterritt targeted Flowplay Incorporated; Microsoft Corporation (Xbox Live); Ottawa Catholic School Board; Rockstar Games Incorporated; and Tumblr Incorporated.

Defence KC Ronan Lavery told the court he had instructed an expert to produce a report to assist in preparation of the defence case.

After hearing the report would not be available until early November, Judge Roseanne McCormick KC said she would conduct an initial review on November 15.

Prosecuting KC Samuel Magee said while any prospective trial would obviously not take place until next year, he told the judge he would be “grateful if a trial slot could be identified”.

Judge McCormick told the barristers the trial would be heard in the summer term but given the “sheer scale of the case, it doesn’t make sense to put it in on the first day back”.

Releasing Sterritt on bail, she listed the trial to begin on April 15, 2024, with a review of the case the preceding week.


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