Info@NationalCyberSecurity
Info@NationalCyberSecurity

Lapsu$ hacker behind GTA 6 leak sentenced to life in hospital prison | #hacking | #cybersecurity | #infosec | #comptia | #pentest | #hacker


Arion Kurtaj was deemed a high risk to the public due to his skills and desire to commit cybercrime again and will be in a secure hospital until he is no longer deemed a danger.

The 18-year-old behind the notorious Rockstar Games data breach last year has been given an indefinite hospital sentence by a UK court, according to a BBC report.

Arion Kurtaj from Oxford was allegedly a key member of the Lapsu$ cybercrime gang, which gained notoriety in recent years for a series of high-profile attacks on various organisations.

The UK judge sentenced Kurtaj to a secure hospital for life unless doctors deem that he is no longer a danger. The judge said his skills and desire to commit cybercrimes again make him a high risk to the public, BBC reports.

As Kurtaj has severe autism, doctors deemed him unfit to stand trial, so the jury was asked to determine whether or not he committed the alleged acts and if he did so with criminal intent.

The jury was told that Kurtaj was on bail for hacking Nvidia and BT/EE and was in police protection when he did the Rockstar hack. The notorious hack that leaked the Grand Theft Auto 6 (GTA 6) footage was allegedly carried out using an Amazon firestick, a hotel TV and a mobile phone – as Kurtaj’s laptop had been seized.

The leaked footage comprised around 90 video clips showing robberies, car chases and gun battles – typical scenes of the action and adventure game series. The videos were posted to an online message board, GTAForums, but were later removed by the forum on the request of Rockstar Games.

At the time, Rockstar Games said it was “extremely disappointed” that details of GTA 6 were leaked in such a way, but added that the hack would not have any effect on its development timeline for the upcoming game.

Kurtaj’s defence team argued that the success of the game’s recent trailer launch indicated that his hack had not caused serious harm to the game developer. But the UK court was told that Kurtaj had been violent while in custody, causing injuries and property damage.

Meanwhile, BBC reports that a 17-year-old member of Lapsu$ was found guilty in the same trial and that he was sentenced to an 18-month youth rehabilitation order. This teenager was allegedly involved in the hacks of Nvidia, BT and of stealing directly from cryptocurrency wallets.

The cybercrime gang took responsibility for the Nvidia cyberattack in February 2022. A week later, it claimed to leak almost 190GB of data from Samsung. Later in March 2022, Okta and Microsoft both confirmed data breaches by Lapsus$.

In September 2022, Uber claimed a hacker linked to the Lapsus$ cybercriminal group was responsible for a cyberattack that forced the ride-hailing company to shut down many of its internal tools.

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