A hacker accused of breaking into at least 100 government websites has been arrested in the border district of Mae Sai in Chiang Rai, police said on Thursday.
The suspect, identified only as Warakorn, was caught as he was about to cross into Myanmar, said Pol Col Niphaphon Sukniyom, superintendent of Metropolitan Police Division 8 in Bangkok.
According to Pol Col Niphaphon, the suspect hacked many government websites and used them as the main domain for operating his illegal websites.
Typically, illegal websites are automatically blocked from Google search, while government agency websites can usually be found on the first page of search results.
By gaining access to the agencies’ websites, the hacker was able to exploit their prominence to advertise illegal websites. The illegal links were damaging to the agencies and also confused the public, said Pol Col Niphaphon.
To make matters worse, the investigation showed the suspect also opened bank accounts to receive money from the gangs that hired him to hack into the websites, he added.
Mr Warakorn was being detained for further questioning. Police have advised state agencies to regularly check their websites, especially those that have been dormant for some time, for any suspicious access.
If a website displays an illegal advertisement, it may have been hacked. The agencies should immediately address the problem or alert the authorities, said Pol Col Niphaphon.