Cyber Crime Team support national operation

28 Aug 2015 00:00 AM

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Officers from the Regional Cyber Crime Team have this week targeted registered members of a hacking website in support of a nationwide operation.

Operation Vivarium was co-ordinated by the National Crime Agency (NCA) and targeted users of the hacking group Lizard Squad and a tool they have developed called Lizard Stresser.

The software used Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks which allowed people to pay the hackers to take websites offline for up to eight hours at a time.

The attacks worked by flooding web servers and websites with massive amounts of data and leaving them inaccessible to users.

Address visits co-ordinated by the NCA have taken place across the country this week involving officers from a host of different police forces including officers from the North East Regional Special Operations Unit cyber crime team.

Two individuals who were linked to the Lizard Stresser website were visited at separate addresses in Sunderland and given advice by officers.

The individuals are not believed to be responsible for DDoS attacks but were spoken to about the risk of entering into serious forms of cyber crime.

A spokesperson from the North East Regional Special Operations Unit said: "Such attacks are illegal, can prevent individuals from accessing vital online services and can cause significant financial and reputational damage to businesses.

"Committing cyber crime can result in severe restrictions on people's freedom, access to the internet, digital devices and future career prospects."

The Protect/Prevent strategy is something at the forefront of Cyber Crime, evidenced by the creation of the dedicated role of a Protect officer whose role is to provide guidance and advice to businesses and the education sector in how to protect themselves from cyber attacks.

With approximately 30 per cent of UK businesses reporting that they’ve suffered a DDoS attack in the last year, NERCCU continue to remind businesses to take steps to protect themselves.

The government’s Cyber Essentials Scheme provides guidance on how to guard against and mitigate threats from cyber crime. 

Further advice on staying safe online can be found on and