London: British detectives have arrested a man suspected of being part of a group which hacked into the US Department of Defense last year, Britain`s National Crime Agency (NCA) said on Friday.
The NCA said the 23-year-old, arrested in Sutton Coldfield in central England on Wednesday, is accused of taking part in the cyber attack, which obtained contact details for about 800 of the department`s staff worldwide, such as email addresses and phone numbers.
Details for 34,400 devices were also taken, although the NCA said no sensitive data was stolen and none could be used to identify people personally or compromise US national security interests.
The data formed part of the Department of Defense`s international satellite message dissemination system.
After the attack, the hacker responsible posted screen shots taken of the dashboard used to control the database on the Pastebin website, along with a message, the NCA said.
"We smite the Lizards, LizardSquad your time is near. We’re in your bases, we control your satellites. The missiles shall rein upon thy who claim alliance, watch your heads, ** T-47:59:59 until lift off," the message said.
"We`re one, we`re many, we lurk in the dark, we`re everywhere and anywhere. Live Free Die Hard! DoD, DISA EMSS : Enhanced Mobile Satellite Services is not all, Department of Defense has no Defenses."
In a statement, Jeffrey Thorpe, the Special Agent in Charge at the Department of Defence Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS) said the arrest showed its commitment to stopping cyber criminals.
"DCIS Special Agents will use every tool at their disposal to pursue and bring to justice those that attack the Department of Defence," he said.
The NCA said the arrest was one of 56 made by police forces across Britain coordinated by the agency`s National Cyber Crime Unit.