Australian teen admits government website attacks

Posted by Emma Woollacott

A teenager has admitted launching a series of distributed denial of service (DDOS) attacks against the Australian government.

Nineteen-year-old Steve Slayo - yes, that really is his name - was angered by the plans of communications minister Stephen Conroy to filter all internet access in Australia.

He responded by recruiting an 'American mastermind' nicknamed 'Pulsar' through 4Chan to help him attack government websites. These included those of Conway and the then prime minister Kevin Rudd, as well as the parliamentary and Australian government sites.

Bith the parliamentary website and Conroy's were forced offline for several hours.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, an Australian Federal Police high-tech crime investigations team acted on February 5 after a group posted plans online to attack the sites.

In fact, Slayo has been rather overtaken by events, since after widespread opposition to the filtering plans, coalition parties have indicated that they won't support the proposed legislation, effectively scuppering it.

Perhaps alarmingly, Slayo faces trial despite the fact that he's accepted not to have carried out any attacks himself, acting only to encourage others.

He yesterday pleaded guilty to four charges including one of inciting others to impair electronic communications and two of unauthorised access to restricted data. He will be sentenced next month.