Feeds

Face of Mankind DoS teen perp reprimanded

Stupid boy

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

A UK teenager who admitted launching a denial of service attack on online multiplayer game Face Of Mankind has been reprimanded by police.

The 16-year-old, who can't be named for legal reasons, launched the relatively unsophisticated SYN Flood attack throughout May 2007. As a result, Face Of Mankind's portal was regularly unavailable during the assault.

A police investigation led by Scotland Yard's Computer Crime Unit led to the arrest of the computer studies student in London in October 2007. He admitted responsibility, stating that he and his friends launched the attack after deciding to "take down" the forum over dissatisfaction about the way it was been run. The teenagers co-ordinated their attack on MSN instant messenger.

During the attacks, the teenager logged into the forum and switched over to "invisible" mode, naively thinking this would hide his actions from the site's administrator. These actions led to his undoing, allowing technicians from network analysis and forensics firm Synerity Systems to track down his location in the UK, prior to handing over the case the detectives from Scotland Yard. Synerity Systems was hired by game publishers Ojom to look into the attacks.

Jasper Bongertz explained that the bulletin boards affected by the attack played an integral part of the game: "The bulletin boards were flooded with requests for pages, causing them to go down.

"After we placed a sniffer in front of the servers we found that the attack were coming from one single IP. The same IP was included in the user list for the bulletin board, which gave us an email address. The suspect email address was tied to a subscription to the game which gave us a name and address.

"The attacker was pretty stupid," Bongertz added.

Before it introduced subscription Face Of Mankind boasted 10,000 users. At the time of the attacks it had about 1,500 users. The assaults made the game virtually unplayable and its user base drifted away. Ojom, the publisher of the game, has since taken it down in the face of further assaults which proved more difficult to track down.

"The later attacks were by more professional people using botnets. Finally the game was stopped because those attacks cost money," Bongertz told El Reg. Developers are trying to resurrect the game.

Face Of Mankind's portal is based in Germany. The teenager involved in the attack was read the riot act by police on 24 December but details of the assault, and how he was tracked down, have only just emerged. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
JLaw, Kate Upton EXPOSED in celeb nude pics hack
100 women victimised as Apple iCloud accounts reportedly popped
Rubbish WPS config sees WiFi router keys popped in seconds
Another day, another way in to your home router
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records
'Federated search' spaffed info all over Five Eyes chums
Three quarters of South Korea popped in online gaming raids
Records used to plunder game items, sold off to low lifes
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.