Daniel Lennon was found guilty after sending five million
Sophos, a world leader in protecting businesses against viruses,
spyware and spam, has reminded young people of the importance of
behaving appropriately online following the news that a teenager
has been sentenced for bombarding a former employer with email.
David Lennon, a 19-year-old Briton living in Bedworth,
Warwickshire, pleaded guilty today under section 3 of the Computer
Misuse Act, having sent five million emails to insurance company
Domestic & General Group.
Emails sent by Lennon included a quote from cult horror movie,
bUt He DoEsN't KnOw......" "He DoEsN't KnOw WhAt, SaMaRa?"
"EvErYoNe WiLl SuFfEr
The amount of email caused servers at Domestic &l
General, who Lennon had worked for until he was sacked in 2003, to
"It's essential that young people learn that the internet is not
a playground where any kind of behavior is acceptable," said
senior technology consultant for Sophos. "Computer-literate teens
need to understand that bombarding others with email or malware can
lead to them ending up in court. Kids who are knowledgable about
computers should put their enthusiasm into more positive
Lennon had originally been cleared of the charges last November,
after a ruling that it was not an offence under the Computer Misuse
Act to overwhelm an email server with millions of messages. This
ruling was later challenged by the Crown Prosecution Service,
causing the case to be sent back to the Magistrates Court in May
Lennon was sentenced today at Wimbledon Magistrates Court to a
two month curfew, and will be electronically tagged. The curfew has
been arranged to not clash with Lennon's job at a local cinema.
"Lennon cannot be classed in the same camp as the organised
criminals aiming to steal money from millions of innocent PC users,
but his light sentence reflects the inadequacies of the Computer
Misuse Act. The 1990 act is about as much use as a chocolate teapot
when it comes to dealing with the latest types of cybercrime such
as denial-of-service attacks and email mass-bombardment, and it's
high time that it was revised," continued Cluley. "Hopefully Lennon
is a young man who will learn that what he did was wrong, and will
behave more maturely in future."
Sophos recommends that companies protect their email gateways
with a consolidated solution to defend
against viruses, spyware and spam. Businesses should also secure
their desktop and servers with automatically updated