by CIO Staff

Florida Man Charged With Akamai ‘Botnet’ Attack

Oct 25, 20062 mins

John Bombard, a 32-year-old Seminole, Fla., resident, was hit in federal court on Tuesday with charges related to a June 2004 “botnet” attack on Akamai Technologies’ servers, which slowed or crashed a number of the firm’s customers’ websites, according to a U.S. attorney release on

Cambridge, Mass.-based Akamai provides online content and business practices via its computer server network.

U.S. Attorney Michael J. Sullivan in conjunction with the FBI charged Bombard with two counts of intentionally accessing a protected computer without authorization, and if convicted he faces on each count up to two years in prison followed by one year of supervised release, as well as a $200,000 fine, according to the release.

The U.S. attorney alleges that on June 15, 2004, Bombard helped to orchestrate a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack—in which networks of compromised computers, or “botnets,” are employed to consume website bandwidth via repeated requests for information—on a handful of Akamai’s domain name system servers, according to the release. Botnets are formed when malicious software programs install themselves on unsuspecting victims’ machines with the intention of taking orders from another machine, or a bot master. Bot masters then order compromised machines to perform certain actions, such as sending requests to specific sites to consume computing resources and eventually crash them—as is the case with DDoS attacks.

The botnet employed in the attack on Akamai received orders from a number of computers located at two large universities in the United States, among others, though specific locations weren’t disclosed, according to the release. The U.S. attorney and FBI accuse Bombard of compromising these university systems via a variation of the GAOBOT worm.

Related Link:

  • Calif. Man Sentenced to 3 Years for ‘Botnet’ Attack

Check out our CIO News Alerts and Tech Informer pages for more updated news coverage.