Western Australia police silent on charges for 17-year-old hacker

Police say the charges are unrelated to Wheeler's claim of hacking Microsoft and Sony

Western Australian police have charged a Perth teenager with several computer-related offenses but are not releasing the details.

Dylan Wheeler, 17, was bailed following an interview with detectives on Monday, said Sgt. Gerry Cassidy, media liaison officer. Wheeler has been charged with at least four computer-related offenses, he said.

Wheeler claimed in February that he had breached the developer networks of Microsoft and Sony, extracting the software development kits for two forthcoming consoles, Microsoft's Xbox One and Sony's PlayStation 4.

But Cassidy said the charges are not related to Microsoft or Sony. Police would customarily release charges for a suspect but are not obligated to do so, he said.

Wheeler is scheduled for an appearance next Friday in Perth Children's Court. The charges will be read there, Cassidy said.

Wheeler's Perth residence was raided by police on Feb. 19 but he wasn't arrested. In a phone interview a few days after the raid, Wheeler told IDG News Service that he breached both Microsoft's and Sony's game development networks, extracting software tools used to develop games for the upcoming versions of the Xbox and PlayStation.

Wheeler said Microsoft's senior program manager for investigations within the company's IP Crimes Team knocked on his door in August 2012 and took him to lunch at a hotel. Wheeler, who is studying on his own to pass Cisco network security certification tests, said he was open about his security work and informed Microsoft about several vulnerabilities he found in its networks.

Over the weekend, Wheeler set up an FTP site containing files related to his probes of Microsoft and Sony. Some of the filenames contained the word "Durango," Microsoft's code name for its Xbox One gaming system, and others mention Orbis, Sony's codename for its PlayStation 4 console.

The files could not be downloaded as of Monday morning Perth time. Wheeler said he set up a "deadman switch," which would unlock the files and allow journalists to download the data with a special login and password if he was arrested.

"If I am arrested and do not check in today, then those files you can see on that account will be made downloadable," Wheeler wrote via email on Monday. "At the moment it is a list-only account." The site will unlock at noon GMT on Monday if Wheeler has not checked in, he said.

Wheeler could not be immediately reached later on Monday.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Microsoftsecuritydata breachsony

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeremy Kirk

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?