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Twenty-one hacker arrests worldwide

Three teenagers were among those arrested as part of a worldwide investigation into the actions of groups like Anonymous, AntiSec and LulzSec.

TWENTY-ONE PEOPLE have been arrested in the US, England and Holland in connection with an international investigation into various computer hacking groups.

Sixteen were arrested in the United States – 14 of those for allegedly mounting a cyber attack by Anonymous on the website of PayPal in retaliation for suspending the accounts of Wikileaks.

There were a further two arrests in the US unrelated to the PayPay attack.

One of those arrests was related to the LulzSec group, which last month said it had obtained confidential documents from the servers of AT&T and made them available on the internet.

The other was in relation to an attack on the Tampa Bay InfraGard website. InfraGard is a public-private partnership for critical infrastructure protection sponsored by the FBI.

The cyberattacks on PayPal’s website by the group Anonymous followed the release by WikiLeaks in November of thousands of classified State Department cables.

Anonymous is a loosely organized group of hackers sympathetic to WikiLeaks. It has claimed responsibility for attacks against corporate and government websites worldwide.

The group also claims credit for disrupting the websites of Visa and MasterCard in December when the credit card companies stopped processing donations to WikiLeaks and its founder, Julian Assange.

Forbes reports that the four people arrested in the Netherlands belonged to the AntiSec group, which allegedly hacked a number of websites. Two teenagers were among those arrested – aged 17 and 18.

Dutch News reports that the country’s public prosecution department released a statement alleging that those arrested operated under code names and were trying to steal confidential information.

According to the BBC another teenager – a 16 year-old boy – was arrested in London on suspicion of breaching the Computer Misuse Act.

- Additional reporting by AP

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