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Pirate Swede in 'biggest ever' hacking trial

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Pirate Swede in 'biggest ever' hacking trial
10:14 CEST+02:00
Pirate Bay founder Gottfrid Svartholm Warg is on trial once again in Sweden for his role in committing what prosecutors believe may have been the largest data breach in Swedish history.

Warg, who is currently serving a prison sentence after being convicted of copyright infringement in the infamous Pirate Bay trial, is suspected of having perpetrated a years-long hacker attack against Swedish IT-firm Logica through which he gained unauthorized access to personal data of thousands of people.

"This is, I believe, the largest hacking case ever in Sweden," prosecutor Henrik Olin told the TT news agency on Monday morning as he prepared to enter the Stockholm District Court for the first day of the trial.

"We're talking about customer information, information from the Sweden debt Enforcement Agency (Kronofogden), and a large number of police officers' organizational affiliations."

The data breach at Logica, which supplies public agencies in Sweden with personal data from the country's population registry, was discovered about a year ago.

Prosecutors allege that the 28-year-old Svartholm Warg and a 36-year-old accomplice also on trial, stole information of 20,000 police employees, as well as millions of personal identity numbers (personnummer).

They are also suspected of having copied a registry with nearly 11,000 names of people with protected identities and posting the data online.

In an ironic twist, Warg allegedly carried out the attack from the user account of attorney Monique Wadsted, one of the lawyers who represented US movie studios in the 2009 Pirate Bay trial.

"From what I understand, my Infotorg account was used to hack into the Logica system that had the information," Wadsted told the Metro newspaper, referring to another database containing personal information on Swedes.

Svartholm Warg is also suspected of aggravated fraud for having hacked into the Nordea bank and making several attempts to transfer money from others' accounts, one of which was successful.

The probe into the hacker attack has taken more than a year, with investigators bringing in officials from security service Säpo.

It remains unclear where exactly all the data accessed in the alleged breach may have ended up.

"But I'm convinced that a lot of the stolen material is online, in places we haven't been able to find. There are indications of that in the computers we've confiscated," said Olin.

Two other men from Malmö are also suspected of being accomplices to attempted aggravated fraud for allowing Svartholm Varg to use their accounts to carry about the bank transactions.

TT/The Local/dl

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