Three responsible for Mirai botnet attacks plead guilty

Three responsible for Mirai botnet attacks plead guilty

Three responsible for Mirai botnet attacks plead guilty

In a USA district court in Alaska, Paras Jha plead guilty to six charges on November 28, with the documents unsealed on Tuesday.

Jha and his co-conspirators also sought financial gain, renting the botnet out to other criminals. Jha had maintained the botnet, which hijacked more than 300,000 devices, while looking for new victims to attack and infect, according to court documents. According to New Jersey's Star-Ledger, Jha, who at the time of his arrest was enrolled at Rutgers University studying computer science, pleaded guilty to DDoSing the school's network on multiple occasions between 2014 and 2016. Jha admitted to writing the source code for Mirai, malware that created a botnet by taking over hundreds of thousands of computers and connected devices like security cameras and DVRs, and used it to commit attacks and online fraud.

The exterior of the Clarkson S. Fisher Building and U.S. Courthouse, where Rutgers University student Paras Jha had a hearing, is seen in Trenton, New Jersey, U.S., December 13, 2017.

While the Federal Bureau of Investigation helped spearhead the campaign, the Mirai Botnet and Clickfraud Botnet cases are now primarily in the hands of prosecutor and Assistant U.S. Attorney Adam Alexander of the District of Alaska, and Trial Attorney C. Alden Pelker of the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the Criminal Division.

The plea agreement also noted that around "September and October 2017", Paras Jha "securely erased the virtual machine used to run Mirai on his device".

Jha admitted to earning about 200 bitcoin, which was valued at $180,000 on January 29, as a result of the clickfraud, prosecutors said.

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"Starting when he was just 19 years old, (Jha) made a series of mistakes with significant consequences that he only now fully appreciates", Stahl said in a statement.

A lawyer representing Jha said he is remorseful and "accepts full responsibility for his actions".

Using the names "Anna Senpai" and "ogmemes", Jha operated Mirai as both a DDoS cannon that could be rented to attack companies and networks - blowing websites and servers offline - and later as a click-fraud operation that directed the malware-infected gizmos to blindly and automatically click on links in order to generate affiliate advertising money.

The two other men are: Josiah White, 20, of Washington, Pennsylvania, and Dalton Norman, 21, of Metairie, Louisiana. A month later the massive assault on infrastructure firm Dyn took place, causing swaths of the internet to be temporarily unavailable.

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