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Teen Convicted of 50,000 Hacks

A teenager in Finland has been convicted for crimes in a series of high profile cyber attacks.

Julius Kivimaki was found guilty of 50,000 "instances of aggravated computer break-ins" and court documents stated that his attacks affected Harvard University and MIT among many others. His crimes involved hijacking emails, blocking traffic to websites and the theft of credit card details.

The District Court of Espoo has not jailed the 17-year-old despite the severity of the crimes. Instead, they have sentenced the youth to a two year suspended prison sentence. The court also confiscated his PC and ordered him to hand over £4,725 worth of property obtained through his crimes.

A statement from the court said: "[The verdict] took into account the young age of the defendant at the time, his capacity to understand the harmfulness of the crimes, and the fact that he had been imprisoned for about a month during the pre-trial investigation."

By exploiting vulnerabilities Kivimaki was able to compromise more than 50,000 computer servers.

He was able to install "backdoors" into tens of thousands of computers which allowed him to retrieve information stored on them.

Prosecutors have accused Kivimaki of adding malware to about 1,400 servers, which they said he used to carry out denial of service attacks on other systems, which bombards affected computers with internet traffic causing them to become overwhelmed.

The teenager was also accused of helping steal seven gigabytes worth of data sent to and from email addresses used by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

He was also accused of obtaining credentials to access accounts belonging to Californian website database provider called MongoHQ, which allowed him to search billing and payment card information belonging to its clients.

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