Teen UK Hacker Who Earned $325,000 from DDoS Tool Pleads Guilty

A 19-year-old teenager has pled guilty to running a service tool that offered DDoS (distributed denial of service) capabilities to buyers, as a service.

Adam Mudd, a 19-year-old  from Hertfordshire, UK, has plead guilty to running a booter service called the Titanium Stresser, used to launch DDoS attacks against targets around the world.

While these services routinely see the light of day while purporting as stress testing tools, the underlying truth is that they are frequently used as an effective means of an attack while targeting websites.

Adam Mudd had created the DDoS tool as a 15-year-old and in the course of the last four years had earned over $385,000 by renting out the service to buyers. The now-defunct Titanium Stresser was used in thousands of DDoS attacks by criminals who rented the service, according to Bedfordshire Police.

The teenager is accused of instigating a staggering 594 DDoS attacks against 181 targets, between December 2013 and March 2015. The tool would go on to become the foundation for the Lizard Stresser, used by the notorious DDoS group Lizard Squad, infamous for their takedown of the PlayStation and Xbox Live console gaming networks during the Christmas period of 2014.

The teenager even offered “complimentary” packages of free 60-second DDoS attacks.

Speaking about the case, Detective Inspector Martin Peters stated:

Adam Mudd’s case is a regrettable one, because this young man clearly has a lot of skill, but he has been utilising that talent for personal gain at the expense of others. We want to make clear it is not our wish to unnecessarily criminalise young people, but want to harness those skills before they accelerate into crime. 

Altogether, analysis of Mudd’s tool revealed that it had been used by others in over 1.7 million DDoS attacks on targets around the world.

Mudd pled guilty to two offences under the Computer Misuse Act and one money laundering count, with sentencing due in December.

Image credit: Flickr.