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Flight sim site turns over hacker evidence to UK cops

Shoot 'em down, says Avsim

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

A US-based flight simulator site targeted by a debilitating hacking attack back in May has reportedly tracked its attackers back to the UK.

Avsim has forwarded a dossier that provides what it reckons is “incontrovertible evidence" about the hacker's identity to Scotland Yard, the BBC reports.

The May attack against Avsim wiped data on two servers containing more than a decade of software modifications and forum posts. Avsim failed to consider the possible need for an offline master copy, a factor that provoked some criticism at the time of the attack.

Users feared the site might have be fatally wounded by the assault. That worst case scenario was avoided, but things are still pretty bad, with the site rebuilding process still ongoing four months after the attack. Avsim estimates it has invested $50,000 in bringing the site back online, including $25,000 supplied by its users.

Avsim, which built a community around Microsoft's Flight Simulator software, said it filed a criminal complaint after giving the alleged perpetrator two opportunities to settle the case. It wants the Metropolitan Police to act as liaison for another UK force in bringing a prosecution that Avsim hopes will result in imprisonment.

"We will not name any names, but have incontrovertible evidence of the individual that performed the hack," Tom Allensworth, the publisher and chief exec of Avsim told the BBC.

"We have protected the forensic evidence and provided that evidence to the London police," he added. ®

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