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Israel vows to treat cyber-crime like terrorism

Country’s deputy foreign minister says no hacker will be immune from retaliatory action

Israel has vowed to treat cyber-criminals the same way as it treats violent terrorist acts.
Israel has vowed to treat cyber-criminals the same way as it treats violent terrorist acts.

Israel has said that it will respond to cyber-attacks the same way it responds to violent terrorist acts after a hacker posted thousands of Israeli citizens’ credit card details online, according to the BBC.

A hacker named OxOmar has claimed responsibility for the hack and information leak. The man claims to be from Saudi Arabia, but reports suggest that OxOmar may be a 19-year-old living in Mexico.

Credit card companies say at least 6,000 valid cards have been exposed.

Such cyber-attacks are "a breach of sovereignty comparable to a terrorist operation, and must be treated as such", Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon told the BBC.

"Israel has active capabilities for striking at those who are trying to harm it, and no agency or hacker will be immune from retaliatory action," he added, without giving further details.

Reuters has reported that an aide to Ayalon said Israel was aware of the report OxOmar may be in Mexico, but had not yet requested help from the Mexican authorities.