While justice may not be swift, federal authorities are finally getting around to charging someone for the October 2010 distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack against the website of rocker Gene Simmons.
The FBI this week arrested Kevin George Poe who was arraigned on charges of conspiracy and unauthorized impairment of a protected computer.
From the FBI press release:
FBI special agents this morning arrested a Connecticut man who is charged with waging a denial of service attack against GeneSimmons.com, a website operated by the frontman for the rock band KISS.
Kevin George Poe, 24, of Manchester, Connecticut, who used the screen name “spydr101,” was taken into custody without incident at the federal courthouse in Hartford. Poe made his initial appearance this morning in United States District Court, where a judge ordered Poe released on a $10,000 bond and ordered him to appear in federal court in Los Angeles on a date that has yet to be scheduled.
A federal grand jury in Los Angeles returned an indictment last week that accused Poe of being affiliated with the Anonymous hacking group. The indictment specifically charges Poe with two counts—conspiracy and unauthorized impairment of a protected computer.
During a five-day period in October 2010, Poe and others linked to Anonymous allegedly conducted a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack against Simmons’ computer systems, sending tens of thousands of electronic requests designed to overload the computer server and render the website useless. According to the indictment, Poe used a favorite software tool of the Anonymous collective—a Low Orbit Ion Cannon, which is a computer program that is used to send extremely large numbers of “packets” or requests over a network in an attempt to overwhelm a target computer.
If convicted of the two counts in the indictment, Poe would face a statutory maximum penalty of 15 years in federal prison.
The case against Poe was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Los Angeles Field Office. Poe was arrested by special agents at the FBI New Haven Field Office.
Federal law enforcement authorities are continuing their investigations into other attacks claimed by the hacktivists, including those against PayPal, Visa, MasterCard, PostFinance Bank, Amazon, Bank of America, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce website, as well as for having breached the systems of security consultants HBGary Federal.
In August, Scotland Yard has announced the arrest of Peter David Gibson, 22, of Castleton Road, Hartlepool, Cleveland on charges that the student participated in DDoS attacks organized by Anonymous, particularly the attack on the online payment processor Pay Pal late last year.
Previously, Scotland Yard had announced in late July they had arrested suspected Anonymous spokesman Jake Davis, also known as Topiary. Also in late July, more than 35 Search Warrants Executed in United States resulting in fourteen individuals being arrested by FBI agents, and five arrests were made in Europe as part of the ongoing investigations into the attack on PayPal.
In early July, Italian authorities had conducted 31 raids connected to investigations into attacks claimed by the hacker collective, including operations targeting the Italian government, and in June 19-year-old suspected Anonymous hacktivist Ryan Cleary was arrested after a joint investigation by Scotland Yard and the FBI.