eBay domain 'thief' evades charges... for now

eBay wants to work out how it happened first...

eBay wants to work out how it happened first...

A school pupil who admitted taking ownership of the eBay Germany domain will not face charges immediately as eBay Germany first wants to investigate the incident further.

The 19-year-old from Helmstedt, Lower Saxony, confessed last week to requesting a DNS (domain name server) transfer for eBay.de, but claimed that he did not want to cause damage.

A spokeswoman for eBay said on Tuesday that the company is not taking any action until it has investigated the incident.

"We want to carefully check all the facts, before we do anything," she said.

The teenager is likely to face charges of spying on data and computer sabotage, according to Frank Federau, a spokesman for the Lower Saxony police.

The domain hijacking incident happened at the end of August. The teenager claims that he stumbled across websites which described how to do a DNS transfer and "just for fun" requested a DNS transfer for several sites including Google.de, Web.de, Amazon.de and eBay.de.

Most of these transfers were denied, but the transfer for eBay went ahead. It is unclear how the domain could have been transferred without eBay's consent.

Martin Fiutak writes for ZDNet Germany