Not pictured: the Lizard Squad.William B. Neaves
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Federal prosecutors have charged two 19-year-old men with running “hacking-for-hire” websites that attacked companies worldwide and did business with international hacking groups “Lizard Squad” and “PoodleCorp.” Zachary Buchta of Fallston, Maryland, and Bradley Jan Willem van Rooy of the Netherlands, have both been charged with conspiring to cause damage to protected computers.
Buchta walked out of federal court in Chicago yesterday after being released on bail. He was arrested earlier but released on his own recognizance.
The judge ruled that Buchta can live with his mother in Maryland while he awaits trial, but he won’t be allowed to access the Internet or have any contact with van Rooy.
As for van Rooy, he was arrested in the Netherlands last month and remains in custody there.
The allegations against Buchta and van Rooy are among the first US charges related to Lizard Squad.
The site that first got the feds’ attention was phonebomber.net, which allowed paying customers to purchase a barrage of harassing phone calls directed at chosen targets. One of the victims, who resided in Illinois, received a phone call every hour for 30 days last fall.
The complaint (PDF) describes her experience, where she received the following recorded message:
When you walk the fucking streets, Motherfucker, you better look over your fucking back because I don’t flying fuck if we have to burn your fucking house down, if we have to fucking track your goddamned family down, we will fuck your shit up motherfuck.
The phonebomber.net website charged just $20 to initiate the harassment, according to a report in the Chicago Tribune.
“Your target will be left with only 3 options,” the hackers bragged on their site. “Change their number, Bend to your whim, deal with a ringing phone for the length of our attack :\”
Police say the two worked together with other members of Lizard Squad to run additional websites that trafficked in stolen credit card numbers and offered hacking-for-hire services alleged to have caused thousands of “denial of service” attacks worldwide.
Buchta used online screen names “@fbiarelosers,” “pein,” “xotehpoodle” and “lizard,” while van Rooy went by “Uchiha,” “@UchihaLS,” “dragon” and “fox.”
The investigation was run out of the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
The maximum sentence for the charges is 10 years in prison.