American boy tried to hack Brussels Airport after terrorist attack

Belgian prosecutors said they are investigating a cyberattack on Brussels airport's website the night after it was bombed by Islamists, following an admission by a United States youth that he had targeted the website remotely.

The boy's efforts to take down the airport's website and infiltrate its computer system on March 22-23 were unsuccessful, it added. The American FBI raided premises in Pittsburgh and questioned an American suspect following a request from Belgium.

According to a statement issued to Belgian press by the country's Federal Prosecution Office, the young hacker attempted to break into the airport's website and then escalate his access to core airport systems.

The prosecutors say that "in the interest of the investigation" no further information will be released.

Preliminary interviews and searches of seized computers and other evidence have shown no indication of a "terrorist motive" or Isis links, prosecutors said.

A source close to the investigation told AFP the suspect was "not radicalised" and simply believed "it was the right time" to carry out the attack.

A 14-year-old United States teen has admitted to attempting to hack the Brussels Zaventem Airport on the day after brutal ISIS bombings had killed 32 people, on the morning of March 22, 2016. In total, 32 civilians and three IS-linked terrorists were killed, with more than 300 people injured.

  • Leroy Wright