Hacker Pleads Guilty to Bot Net Attack

Associated Press reports that a California hacker has pleaded guilty to disrupting computer systems - including the network of a hospital - through an attack designed to install ‘adware’ on compromised PCs.

Christopher Maxwell who faces fifteen years in jail, also confessed to disrupting US military systems during the January 2005 attack. As part of a plea bargain agreement, Maxwell agreed to pay $252,000 in compensation to Northwest Hospital and Medical Centre in Seattle, the main victim of his attack, and the Department of Defense.

Maxwell, along with two accomplices, launched a botnet attack that was blamed for forcing Northwest Hospital to shut down computers in the facility's intensive care unit, as well as disrupting doctors' pagers.

US military computer systems at the headquarters of the 5th Signal Command in Manheim, Germany, and at the Directorate of Information Management in Fort Carson, Colorado, were also hit. The three made more than $100,000 in advertising commissions as a result of the attack.