CHICAGO (WLS) --Two teenagers have been charged in connection with a hackers-for-hire operation that targeted companies in Illinois and around the world.
On Wednesday, one of the suspects - a 19-year-old man from Fallston, Md. - appeared in federal court in Chicago.
READ THE FEDERAL COMPLAINT
If a computer is running slowly or a website is not responding as it should, there could be many reasons for the delays. Or it could be a sign that the computer or website is under attack.
"The U.S. is under the most attack by these types of attacks ... they are very common today," said Darren Guccione, of Keeper Security Inc.
Zachary Buchta is accused of hacking computers with victims around the world including in Illinois.
Federal prosecutors allege Buchta operated websites that would launch denial-of-service attacks on unsuspecting companies and individuals and traffic stolen payment card information.
Some victims reported getting threatening phones calls.
The complaint alleges this charge stems from an international investigation into hacking groups called "Lizard Squad" and "Poodle Corp."
Buchta was released on bond Wednesday and did not comment.
The judge ordered that he is not allowed internet access.
A local expert in cyber security warns that the attacks often start with a phishing scam to lead you to a website which compromises your computer.
"If you just see 'www.' You should immediately be suspect, especially if it's a bank because banks should be using 'https,'" Guccione said.
The other teen charged in this case is Bradley Jan Willem van Rooy, 19, of Leiden, the Netherlands.