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Developer of DDoS Botnets Based on Mirai Code Sentenced to Prison

A man who developed distributed denial of service (DDoS) botnets based on the source code of Mirai was sentenced to 13 months in federal prison.

A man who developed distributed denial of service (DDoS) botnets based on the source code of Mirai was sentenced to 13 months in federal prison.

Kenneth Currin Schuchman, 22, of Vancouver, Washington, who operated under the online moniker of Nexus Zeta, was involved in the creation and use of botnets such as “Satori,” “Okiru,” “Masuta” and “Tsunami,” the United States Department of Justice says.

Initially based on the publicly available Mirai source code, the botnets received additional capabilities over time, which increased their complexity and efficiency, the DoJ says.

Schuchman and his associates used the botnets to launch DDoS attacks themselves, but the main purpose was to sell access to the botnets to paying customers to make a profit.

Engaging in botnet activity since at least August 2017, Schuchman is believed to have had compromised hundreds of thousands of devices worldwide.

“Schuchman continued to engage in criminal botnet activity, and violated several other conditions of his pretrial release, following his arrest in August 2018,” DoJ says.

Schuchman, who pleaded guilty to one count of fraud and related activity in connection with computers, worked with two associates: Aaron Sterritt, also known as “Vamp” or “Viktor,” a national of the United Kingdom, and Logan Shwydiuk, also known as “Drake,” a Canadian national.

A recently unsealed indictment charges Sterritt and Shwydiuk as well for their roles in developing and operating botnets to launch DDoS attacks.

In addition to prison time, Schuchman was sentenced to 18 months of community confinement following his release from prison, and three years of supervised release.

Related: Man Sentenced to 5 Years in Prison for DDoS Attacks

Related: Mirai Authors Avoid Prison After Working With FBI

Related: Hacktivist Gets 10-Year Prison Sentence for DDoS Attack on Hospitals

Written By

Ionut Arghire is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek.

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