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China Fake Earthquake Hacker Arrested

The earthquake in China’s Sichuan province was a huge natural disaster. Occurring on May 12, it killed some 70,000 people and has left millions homeless, pushing authorities to the limit to try and cope with problems in the isolated area. The last thing they needed was a second earthquake.

But, according to the Beijing News, that’s what they got – or at least a teenage hacker predicting one. According to that newspaper, a 19-year-old hacker identified only as Chen, from Jiangsu province, hacked into a seismology site in Guangxi province in late May, altering text on the homepage so it offered a prediction of a "huge earthquake of magnitude 9 or more."

He reportedly did it to demonstrate his skills. But when he returned to the site in early June to delete the data, authorities were waiting and traced him. He was arrested June 4. The paper said he’d been arrested earlier for other hacking offences.

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