- Europol announced Monday that its European Cybercrime Centre, as well as authorities from a number of other law enforcement organizations, conducted a coordinated crack down on young people looking to conduct Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks earlier this month.
- The crackdown included law enforcement authorities from Australia, Belgium, France, Hungary, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States and led to 34 arrests and 101 suspects "interviewed and cautioned."
- The law enforcement agencies hosted undercover meetings to attract their subjects, who were mainly young adults under the age of 20.
People arrested were suspected of paying for stressers and booters services — tools often used in criminal "DDoS for hire" schemes, Interpol said in an announcement.
The operation conducted this month is part of a larger prevention campaign taking place in all of the participating countries. The goal is to raise awareness of the risk of young adults getting involved in cybercrime.
DDoS attacks are remarkably easy to conduct, and young computer programmers can be rewarded well for lending their skills to such projects. With little investment of time or resources, attackers can earn a huge pay out. Interpol suggests "many do it for fun without realizing the consequences of their actions." By intervening early, Interpol wants to encourage young people to put their skills to use in more positive ways.