Lizard Squad hacker who helped bring down PSN and Xbox Live at Christmas avoids jail

UPDATE: Lizard Squad attacks Daybreak games in retaliation.

UPDATE 10th July 2015: Notorious hacker group Lizard Squad has attacked Daybreak games including Planetside 2 in an apparent retaliation against boss John Smedley.

Earlier this week John Smedley, boss of H1Z1 and Planetside 2 developer Daybreak, formerly Sony Online Entertainment, heavily criticised convicted hacker Julius "zeekill" Kivimaki, who he blamed for a series of personal attacks.

Last night Lizard Squad targeted Daybreak's games with what Smedley called a “minor” Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack - but it was significant to render all of the company's games unplayable for many.

On Twitter Lizard Squad said it was behind the attack.

Earlier, Smedley took to Reddit to explain further his comments on Zeekill.

"He was the guy that brought down my flight with a bomb threat," Smedley said. "I've heard the entire recording where he convinced an airline customer service agent there was a bomb on the plane. He also in conjunction with others has sent me pictures of my father's grave with nasty stuff on it. I've had my entire credit history put out on the internet including my SSN and my families info. We've had multiple social networks and other things hacked and had my family members called.

"I've also been swatted (multiple times) and had over 50 false credit applications submitted in my name and had to deal with the ramifications of what happens to your credit when this kind of thing happens. It's not good. And to top it all off they decided to submit false tax returns."

Smedley reiterated his desire to sue Kivimaki.

So to put this bluntly - I want this kind in jail for a long time," he said. "You shouldn't be able to do crap like this without any hint of a consequence. I plan on doing everything in my power to see him get what's coming to him in court one way or another."

UPDATE 9th July 2015: John Smedley, boss of H1Z1 and Planetside 2 developer Daybreak, formerly Sony Online Entertainment, has heavily criticised convicted hacker Julius "zeekill" Kivimaki, who he blames for a series of personal attacks.

Last year Smedley was on American Airlines flight 362, which had intended to travel from Dallas to San Francisco but was diverted to Phoenix, Arizona where it was forced to make an emergency landing after a bomb threat was issued.

In a series of tweets, Smedley claimed Kivimaki was the person behind the bomb threat, among other personal attacks.

Kivimaki was recently convicted of 50,700 charges relating to computer crime by a Finnish court - but avoided jail. According to Smedley, Kivimaki has 15 pending criminal cases remaining, and so may yet go to jail. But Smedley goes on to say he's ready to sue Kivimaki directly in a civil court.

It's clear Smedley is upset, understandably so given what's happened to him.

As for Kivimaki, he seems defiant in the face of his recent convictions and the drama around his actions. Yesterday he retweeted the below tweet from Lizard Squad.

ORIGINAL STORY 8th July 2015: A hacker teen who helped to bring down PlayStation Network and Xbox Live last Christmas has been convicted of a whopping 50,700 charges related to computer crimes, Finnish newspaper Kaleva (via The Daily Dot) reports.

Julius Kivimaki speaking to Sky News in December 2014.

Despite the huge number of charges, a Finnish court gave Lizard Squad member Julius "zeekill" Kivimaki, 17, a two-year suspended sentence, meaning he'll avoid jail.

Both Xbox Live and Sony's PlayStation Network suffered significant periods of downtime over Christmas when a group calling itself Lizard Squad struck both services with a DDOS (distributed denial of service) attack.

Xbox 360 and Xbox One owners were unable to log in, play online games or use online apps for around 24 hours. PlayStation 3, 4 and Vita owners were unable to log in, play online games or create new PlayStation accounts for several days.

Amid the furore over Lizard Squad's action earlier this year, Kivimaki gave Sky News an interview in which he said the attack was a bid to "raise awareness" of the "low state of computer security" at Sony and Microsoft.

Sony apologised for the outage by offering all PlayStation Plus members who had an active membership or free trial on 25th December a membership extension of five days, as well as a code for a one-time 10 per cent discount off a total cart purchase in the PlayStation Store.

Lizard Squad remained defiant following the news of zeekill's sentencing.

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Wesley Yin-Poole

Wesley Yin-Poole

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Wesley is Eurogamer's editor. He likes news, interviews, and more news. He also likes Street Fighter more than anyone can get him to shut up about it.


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