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09-06-12, 06:00 PM
A hacker who controlled a botnet of 72,000 computers and rented out command-and-control access to various malcontents was sentenced to 30 months in prison today, the Department of Justice (http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2012/September/12-crm-1082.html) said.

Joshua Schichtel, 30, of Phoenix, Ariz., pleaded guilty in August of last year to one count of "attempting to cause damage to multiple computers without authorization by the transmission of programs, codes, or commands, a violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act," the DOJ said. Schichtel sold botnet access to various individuals who paid to have him install malware on victims' computers. Although the DOJ said multiple people paid Schichtel to install malware on computers, he pleaded guilty to a charge involving one customer who paid $1,500 to have malware installed on 72,000 computers.

A charge filed last year against Schichtel in US District Court in Washington, DC, says his alleged crime occurred on or around Nov. 20, 2009, in the DC Area. The court document and the DOJ announcement donâ??t contain many details on the crime that put him behind bars, but Schichtelâ??s history with the law goes back some time.

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