UK Man Admits Launching Cyberattacks on Police and University Websites

He has pleaded guilty to nine hacking-related charges

21-year-old Lewys Stephen Martin of the United Kingdom – charged back in November 2012 with disrupting various websites, including the ones of Oxford University, Cambridge University and Kent Police – has pleaded guilty to the charges brought against him.

According to Kent Police, the hacker has pleaded guilty to one count of unauthorized access to computer material, one count of unauthorized computer access with intent to commit other offences, five counts of unauthorized acts with intent to impair operation of a computer, and two counts of unauthorized computer access with intent to commit other offences.

Martin, who used the online moniker “Sk1ink,” has admitted launching attacks against the public websites of Cambridge and Oxford universities between January 29 and February 1, 2012. On February 1 and 2 of the same year, he temporarily disrupted the Kent Police site.

He was arrested one day later.

In addition to these attacks, a complaint has been filed against the man by an individual whose computer he repaired. Martin broke into one of the computer owner’s online accounts.

Prosecutor Ken Goss from the CPS South East Complex Casework Unit has revealed that both Oxford and Cambridge have spent two weeks’ worth of man-hours to deal with the attacks launched by Martin.

“In this case, Martin was attacking not only large organisations, but individuals. Anyone who has been the victim of cyber crime knows how devastating it can be, but for organisations, the impact can be just as damaging, both to their business and their reputation,” Goss noted.

“We have robust systems in place to prevent our website being compromised. The attack on ours and other public-facing websites was serious and Martin’s intention was to cause as much disruption and failure as possible,” Detective Chief Inspector Tom Richards of Kent Police commented.

“Anyone who thinks of carrying out these types of attacks will be tracked down and brought before the courts to face the consequence of their actions.”

The hacker’s sentencing is scheduled for May.

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