Washington: A Malaysia-based hacker accused of stealing personal information of US military officials and passing it on to the Islamic State terror group has been arrested, it was reported on Friday.
The US Justice Department said Ardit Ferizi, a Kosovo citizen, was detained in Malaysia on a provisional US arrest warrant alleging he provided material support to the Islamic State and committed computer hacking and identity theft, CNN reported.
According to a criminal complaint, Ferizi hacked into a server and stole names and personally identifiable information of over 1,300 US military and other government personnel — a list that was later posted online in August by a group calling itself the ‘Islamic State Hacking Division’.
The data, including home addresses and photos, was passed on to Junaid Hussein, a British hacker who was active on social media recruiting Westerners to join the Islamic State.
US Assistant Attorney General John Carlin called the case against Ferizi — which combines cybercrime and terror charges — “a first of its kind”.
“This arrest demonstrates our resolve to confront and disrupt IS’ efforts to target Americans, in whatever form and wherever they occur,” Carlin said.
Malaysian Police said the 20-year-old hacker had entered the country in August 2014 to pursue computer science and computer forensics studies at a college in Kuala Lumpur.