• United States



by Paul Kerstein

UK Hackers Jailed Over TK Worm

Oct 10, 20052 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

Two British men who pleaded guilty to charges they helped create the”TK worm” were sentenced to prison Friday in Newcastle Crown Court. Theworm infected thousands of computers, including two owned by the U.S.Department of Defense (DOD).

Jordan Bradley, a 22-year-old electrician, was sentenced to threemonths imprisonment and Andrew Harvey received six months, according tothe National Hi-Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU). Harvey is 23 years old andunemployed. Both men were part of the international hacking gang calledthe Thr34t Krew (TK).

They were arrested in February 2003 after an investigation by the NHTCUand the U.S. Computer and Technology Crime Hi-Tech Response Team(CATCH), based in southern California.

The TK worm created by the gang installed a Trojan horse program andallowed the gang to control infected machines. U.S. authorities said inMay that at least two DOD computers were infected.

The sentencing judge said the number of computers compromised wasunquantifiable, but U.K. authorities said in 2003 the worm infected asmany as 18,000 computers worldwide, causing an estimated ?5.5 million(US$9.6 million) in damages.

Once the computers were infected, the gang could send them commands.Those commands included scanning other computers for vulnerabilities todistributed denial of service attacks, NHTCU said.

A U.S. man, Raymond Paul Steigerwalt, was sentenced to 21 months inprison in May in connection with the Thr34t Krew, and ordered to pay$12,000 in restitution to the DOD. Steigerwalt, 21, was charged withone count of conspiracy to commit fraud and one count of possession ofchild pornography.

By Jeremy Kirk – IDG News Service (London Bureau)