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UK Police Arrest Five Anonymous Hacktivists

The police said the round-up was part of an on-going investigation

In a coordinated 7am raid Thursday morning British bobbies swooped down on houses in London and towns around the country and arrested five men and boys suspected of being part of Anonymous, the loose international coalition that last year unleashed distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks on companies such as PayPal, Visa, MasterCard and PostFinance for refusing to handle payments to the cable-leaking WikiLeaks site and its organizer Julian Assange.

They also tried to take down Amazon for turning off WikiLeaks’ cloud servers.

The culprits are aged 15, 16, 19, 20 and 26 and are being held at their local jails waiting to be charged under the UK’s Computer Misuse Act of 1990. They each face an $8,000 fine and a 10-year stretch in one of Her Majesty’s prisons.

The police said the round-up was part of an on-going investigation by international law enforcement agencies in Europe and the United States.

It reportedly isn’t very hard for authorities to trace the so- called “hacktivists” IP addresses.

Two Dutch teenagers were arrested in December for participating in the Anonymous “Operation: Payback” attacks and are awaiting trial for computer crimes.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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