Computer Misuse Acts Proves Useless Against DOS Attacks

A teenager has been cleared of launching a denial-of-service (DoS) attack against his former employer, in a ruling that delivers another blow to the UK’s Computer Misuse Act.

Judge Kenneth Grant ruled that the youth, who can't be named for legal reasons, had not broken the CMA, under which he was charged. He was accused of sending five million emails to his ex-employer, causing the firm's email server to crash.

The CMA, make illegal the 'unauthorised access' and 'unauthorised modification' of computer material. Section 3, concerns unauthorised data modification and tampering with systems.

Judge Grant told the court that "the computer world has considerably changed since the 1990 Act", and that there was little legal precedent to refer back to. He then ruled that DoS attacks were not illegal under the CMA.