In a startling revelation, a recent report by a British publication sheds light on the audacious hacking activities of 18-year-old Arion Kurtaj, a member of the infamous "digital bandits" group known as Lapsus$. According to court documents filed in the UK, Kurtaj was apprehended by the City of London Police in the town of Bicester, south-central England. The young hacker had been under bail since his arrest in March 2022 for hacking chip manufacturer Nvidia.
During a search of his accommodation at a Travelodge hotel, investigators discovered evidence that exposed Kurtaj's digital exploits. A digital media player was connected to the hotel room's TV, facilitating his infiltration of cloud computing services using a keyboard, mouse, and smartphone.
This setup allowed him to successfully breach the security systems of prominent entities such as global neobank Revolut, rideshare giant Uber, tech titan Microsoft, and game publisher Rockstar Games.
Of particular note was Kurtaj's audacious hack against Rockstar Games. Despite already being on bail for hacking-related crimes, he executed this exploit, even communicating with the company's staff through their Slack platform, boldly identifying himself as an "attacker" rather than an employee.
He claimed to have obtained all data on the highly anticipated GTA VI game and threatened to release its source code unless Rockstar Games engaged with him on the messaging app Telegram.
The leak of GTA VI's details, including information about its female co-star and its Miami: Vice City setting, occurred last year, leading to Rockstar Games officially confirming its existence in February 2022. The extent of Kurtaj's involvement in this particular leak remains uncertain.
Kurtaj's hacking endeavors were not a solitary effort; an unnamed 17-year-old accomplice was also implicated in the activities. The cyber-crime gang Lapsus$, allegedly operating across Brazil and the UK, is believed to have other members who are currently evading authorities. However, both Kurtaj and the unnamed teenager have been taken into custody for their alleged crimes.
While the unnamed teenager has been released on bail, Kurtaj remains in custody awaiting sentencing. The unfolding legal proceedings promise to shed further light on the extent of their hacking exploits and the potential ramifications for the tech industry as a whole. Stay tuned for updates as this case continues to unfold.
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