Anonymous suspect 'Topiary' charged over DDOS attacks

The suspect, 18-year-old Jake Davis, has been charged with five counts

The 18-year-old teenager identified by police as the spokesman for the hacking groups Anonymous and Lulz Security was charged on Sunday with five offenses and expected to appear Monday in a London court.

Jake Davis, 18, was arrested in the Shetland Islands on Wednesday. He is alleged by police to be "Topiary," a spokesman who did interviews with media and ran a prolific Twitter account documenting frequent denial-of-service attacks and data theft escapades of Anonymous and LulzSec.

Davis was charged with conspiring with others to conduct DDOS attacks against the website of the Serious Organised Crime Agency, a British law enforcement institution similar to the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation.

He is also charged with unauthorized access to a computer system, encouraging offenses and two counts of conspiracy. Davis is scheduled to appear in Westminster Magistrates Court on Monday where a judge will decide whether to remand him to custody or grant bail.

Also questioned last Wednesday but not arrested was a 17-year-old male. The Daily Mail identified the teenager as the brother of Davis, although police on Monday said his name was not being released since he has not been charged and would not say if the two are related.

A police spokesman said Monday they were satisfied that Davis was "Topiary" and that they are not pursuing anyone else by the same handle. It has been suggested that the real Topiary has been living in Sweden. Topiary's Twitter account has been inactive since July 22, when he wrote "You cannot arrest an idea."

U.K. police have made several arrests of people allegedly involved with LulzSec and Anonymous, whose online campaigns have breached websites including, and the Arizona Department of Public Safety computer network.

A 19-year-old man, Ryan Cleary, was arrested on June 20 at his home in Wickford, Essex, for allegedly taking part in the attacks against SOCA. He is charged with five computer-related offenses and stands accused of distributing tools to build a botnet used to attack SOCA as well as websites of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry and the British Phonographic Industry.

Last month, the U.K.'s Police Central e-Crime Unit also arrested a 16-year-old last month on suspicion of violating the Computer Misuse Act 1990.

Send news tips and comments to

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Criminalsecuritydata breachlegalMetropolitan Police ServiceExploits / vulnerabilitiesdata protectioncybercrime

More about CA TechnologiesetworkFederal Bureau of InvestigationInternational Federation of the Phonographic Industry

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by Jeremy Kirk

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Will your data protection strategy be enough when disaster strikes?

    Speakers: - Paul O’Connor, Engagement leader - Performance Audit Group, Victorian Auditor-General’s Office (VAGO) - Nigel Phair, Managing Director, Centre for Internet Safety - Joshua Stenhouse, Technical Evangelist, Zerto - Anthony Caruana, CSO MC & Moderator

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts

Market Place