Teen Who Leaked Grand Theft Auto VI Indefinitely Detailed

Penka Hristovska
Penka Hristovska Senior Editor
Penka Hristovska Penka Hristovska Senior Editor

An 18-year-old hacker, who leaked clips of a forthcoming Grand Theft Auto (GTA) game, was sentenced to indefinite detention in a hospital.

Arion Kurtaj from Oxford was a key member of international gang Lapsus$ and launched a number of cyber attacks on tech giants, including hacking into the systems of Uber, Nvidia, and Rockstar Games. He accessed information on around 5,000 Revolut consumers and caused Uber nearly $3 million of damage to Uber. Rockstar Games told the court that it took thousands of hours of staff time and $5m to recover from the hack.

In the case of Rockstar Games, Kurtaj stole 90 clips from the Grand Theft Auto VI, which is one of the most highly anticipated video game releases of all time and then broke into the company’s internal Slack messaging, informing them that “if Rockstar does not contact me on Telegram within 24 hours I will start releasing the source code.” He later published the source code and the clips on an online forum.

Kurtaj carried out the Grand Theft Auto hack while on bail awaiting sentencing for the other cyberattacks. He had his laptop confiscated at the time but he used an Amazon Fire TV stick, his mobile phone, and a hotel television to steal the GTA clips.

Kurtaj, who is autistic, was deemed unfit to stand trial. Instead, the jury didn’t rule on his guilt but decided on whether he committed the acts. Judge Patricia Lees, who presided over the case, sentenced him to indefinite detection as Kurtaj remained “determined to commit further serious offences if the opportunity arose.” She added that Kurtaj should be placed in a secure hospital and remain there until he no longer poses a risk to the public.

Judge Lees also explained that while the GTA hack didn’t seriously harm the game developer, this and his other hacks still caused real harm on the companies and individuals that were on the receiving end of the cyberattacks Kurtaj took part in.

About the Author
Penka Hristovska
Penka Hristovska
Senior Editor

About the Author

Penka Hristovska is an editor at SafetyDetectives. She was an editor at several review sites that covered all things technology — including VPNs and password managers — and had previously written on various topics, from online security and gaming to computer hardware. She’s highly interested in the latest developments in the cybersecurity space and enjoys learning about new trends in the tech sector. When she’s not in “research mode,” she’s probably re-watching Lord of The Rings or playing DOTA 2 with her friends.

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