A 15-year-old boy allegedly involved in the TalkTalk hacking was taken into custody in Northern Ireland, according to Scotland Yard.
The boy was arrested at the Antrim police station, where he is being questioned by detectives. He was arrested under the suspicion of Computer Misuse Act offences. The investigation is being carried out jointly by the Metropolitan Police Cyber Crime Unit (MPCCU) and the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI).
As reported by BBC, news emerged last week that TalkTalk had been rocked by a “significant and sustained cyber-attack.” The telephone provider said that personal, banking and credit card information of its nearly four million customers could be at risk of being stolen.
After the arrest, a TalkTalk spokesman said, “TalkTalk can confirm that we have been informed by the Metropolitan Police of the arrest of a suspect in connection with the cyber attack on our website on October 21. We know this has been a worrying time for customers and we are grateful for the swift response and hard work of the police. We will continue to assist in the ongoing investigation.”
A spokesperson from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) said, “Our investigations into previous incidents are ongoing, and it wouldn’t be appropriate to presume a company had breached the Data Protection Act until our enquiries are complete. But what is clear is that organisations do need to make sure they have the appropriate level of security in place to protect the customer information they hold. If they don’t, we will act.”
Consumer group, Which?, called for the telephone company to release the names of the affected customers. “Nobody should lose out as a result of this data breach, so TalkTalk should also look at what more it needs to do for its customers, including appropriate compensation for those affected,” Richard Lloyd, executive director of the group, said, as reported by the Guardian. “It’s important people are treated fairly so we expect that any affected TalkTalk customers who want to leave their contract should be able to do so without penalty.”
Telecoms regulator Ofcom said that it was “extremely concerned about the data breach and any potential effects” the hack could have on customers. “Until all of the facts have been established it is too early to say whether TalkTalk customers would have the right to terminate their contract,” a spokeswoman said.
As reported by RTE News, TalkTalk Chief Executive, Dido Harding, said that the breach had not impacted its “core systems,” but only the company’s website. Harding further said that she was uncertain as to how many customers had been affected by the hack.