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Teen computer genuis busted for busting neighbors - Los Angeles

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
December 19th, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

A boy-genius has been arrested for "swatting" several celebrities and possibly businesses in the Los Angeles area. Swatting is a type of cybercrime that endangers lives and bullies people.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A teenager, as of yet unnamed, has been arrested in connection with several swatting incidents in the Los Angeles area. The incidents have targeted Ashtun Kutcher, Justin Bieber, Miley Cyrus, and Simon Cowell. They may have also targeted local businesses too, including a bank.

Swatting is a type of cybercrime where a caller uses a computer to call 911 to report a dangerous situation that requires rapid deployment of a SWAT team.

The caller's voice and phone number are disguised. In at least one incident, the call appeared to originate within the victim's own home.

In the current case, detectives say they have arrested a teenage boy who appears to have very advanced computer skills. The teen has been connected to several high-profile swatting incidents.

Swatting calls require the skilled use of a computer and special software such as that used by the deaf to make calls. Swatting first emerged as a prank played by small-time hackers who wanted to bully others. However, several high-profile incidents involving celebrity figures have brought swatting to national attention.

Aside from initiating a false 911 call, swatting requires a swift, usually armed response. That response can cost thousands of dollars and endanger lives.

At least one officer has been injured while responding to a swatting incident earlier in the year.

While no charges have been filed yet, they are likely pending. It is hoped this brings an end to the swatting incidents in Los Angeles.

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