Man, 20, arrested over German politician data breach

08 Janvier, 2019, 19:51 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Hackers have targeted German politicians before

The BKA said the suspect had indicated he was motivated by "anger at the public statements of the politicans, journalists and public figures concerned".

One of the largest data leaks in German history, in which private information about 900 politicians was published, was perpetrated by a 20-year-old hacker and student living in his parents' house, authorities said.

Georg Ungefuk, a spokesperson for the Frankfurt prosecutors' office that specializes in internet crime, says the man told investigators he acted alone and they have found no evidence that anyone else was involved.

Der Spiegel reported on its website that the 20-year-old had confessed. It quoted an investigator as saying the suspect had not been aware of the scale of the effect of his actions, and so far nothing pointed to any link to foreign security agencies.

The BKA said the suspect's apartment had been searched on Sunday, after which he was taken into custody.

Contacts, private chats and letters, financial details, addresses and copies of identity cards were exposed in what appeared to be one of Germany's most far-reaching data leaks.

As reported last week, the so-called "Hacker-Angriff" (Hacker Attack) saw various figures from across the spectrum of public life having their personal data dumped online.

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Fietz told reporters that German lawmakers at all levels, including from the European parliament, German parliament, and local politicians, had been affected.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel whose email address appeared to have been released.

The information derived both from social media and private "cloud" data.

The data was drip-fed out on Twitter - in the form of an Advent calendar - during December; a few days ago, Twitter got round to suspending the accounts spreading the information.

It appears odd that a lone 20-year-old should go to such lengths if he was not aware of the extent of his actions.

The case has nevertheless been deeply embarrassing for the political class, and increased pressure on the unpopular interior minister, Horst Seehofer.


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