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LATEST NEWS

  • Marijan Hassan - Tech Journalist

18-year-old GTA VI hacker sentenced to indefinite imprisonment in secure hospital


Hacker Arion Kurtaj has been charged with the Rockstar Games data breach that exposed GTA VI source code and 90 footage clips, all with unfinished assets and other in-development elements.



The 18-year-old is said to be part of the Lapsus$ gang, an international hacking group involved in attacks on Nvidia, Microsoft, Samsung, and Uber among other top companies.

According to reports, Kurtaj was out on bail for the Nvidia attack and under police custody when the GTA VI hack happened.


Interestingly, his laptop had been confiscated but the teenager still managed to hack into Rockstar's internal systems using an Amazon Firestick, his hotel TV, and a cell phone — talk of being resourceful.


It gets more interesting. Kurtaj is being detained in a hospital because he suffers from acute autism. During his trial, the jury was requested to simply determine whether or not he was responsible for the attack, not whether or not he'd had criminal intent.


A mental health assessment in the trial noted that Kurtaj” continued to express the intent to return to cybercrime as soon as possible,” adding that he was “highly motivated.”


In his defense, Kurtaj’s lawyers argued that the breach was insignificant owing to the massive success of the recently released GTA VI trailer. However, Rockstar retaliated saying that it had cost the studio $5 million and thousands of hours of staff time.


In the end, Kurtaj was sentenced to indefinite imprisonment in a secure hospital, with the potential to be freed if doctors determine he is no longer a threat to others.


Kurtaj was charged together with another unnamed teenager, a 17-year-old, who is also said to be part of the Lapsus$ gang.

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