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Teen gets two-year prison sentence for DDoS attacks

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UK court sends a message to others selling similar services

Dave Conner on Flickr

Adam Mudd was sentenced to two years in prison by a U.K. judge yesterday for creating a tool used to launch devastating distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks around the world. The Guardian reports that his service, called Titanium Stresser, was used in more than 1.7 million attacks, including assaults on the servers used to support Minecraft, RuneScape and Microsoft’s Xbox Live service.

Mudd is now 20 years old and built the tool when he was 16. Neither he nor Titanium Stresser were involved in the infamous Lizard Squad attacks from 2014, although six other British teens allegedly were. Another pair of teenagers, one in Chicago and another in the Netherlands, were also charged late last year.

In total, Mudd’s tool was used to carry out 594 DDoS attacks between December 2013 and March 2015. The Titanium Stressor proved very popular, and had more than 112,000 registered users who took advantage of various promotions, including bulk discounts and a refer-a-friend program. Mudd raked in nearly $500,000 in U.S. currency and Bitcoin.

The Guardian says that Mudd presented evidence in court that he suffered from undiagnosed Asperger’s syndrome and “was more interested in status in the online gaming community than the money.”

RuneScape developer Jagex reportedly spent $7.7 million trying to fend off the attacks.

“I have a duty to the public who are worried about this,” said a judge during sentencing, “threatened by this, damaged by this all the time. … It’s terrifying.”