The leaker who accessed GTA VI details from Rockstar Games allegedly did so using an Amazon Fire Stick in an England hotel, according to a BBC report.
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The British publication reported that, according to court documents filed in the UK, 18-year-old Arion Kurtaj was “caught red handed” when the City of London Police searched his Travelodge hotel—where he was being held on bail after his March 2022 arrest for hacking chip manufacturer Nvidia—in the south-central England town of Bicester. There, law enforcement found the digital media player connected to the hotel room’s TV, which allowed Kurtaj to infiltrate cloud computing services with a keyboard, mouse, and smartphone.
This setup let him best the likes of global neobank Revolut, rideshare service Uber, tech giant Microsoft, and game publisher Rockstar Games. Kurtaj’s hack against Rockstar Games was described as his “most audacious”—not only because of his flagrant behavior during the hack, but because he executed it while on bail for other hacking-related crimes. Kurtaj even posted in the company’s Slack, telling staff he’s not an employee but “an attacker.”
Kurtaj claimed to have downloaded all of GTA VI’s data, stating that he’d release the source code unless Rockstar Games contacted him on the messaging app Telegram. It’s unclear if the publisher ever reached out to Kurtaj, but copious details about the game, from its female co-star to its Miami: Vice City setting, did leak online last year—though we don’t know for sure if Kurtaj was behind it all. The leak was so bad that Rockstar Games, after years of silence about the next installment in the GTA series, finally confirmed the game’s existence on X (formerly Twitter) in February 2022. It was an enormous leak, so if you missed any of it, I recommend you check out Kotaku’s post on everything we’ve learned about GTA VI since the hack occurred.
As a key member of the “digital bandits” known as the Lapsus$ group, Kurtaj didn’t work alone. As reported by the BBC, an unnamed 17-year-old was also booked for his involvement with the hacks. While other members of the cyber-crime gang, allegedly operating out of both Brazil and the UK, are thought to still be at large, the two teenagers have been arrested for their alleged crimes.
Kotaku reached out to Rockstar for comment.
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Kurtaj is still in custody, while the unnamed teenager is out on bail. Both culprits will be sentenced at a later date, according to the BBC.