A California jury found a former DDoS service administrator (DownThem and Ampnode) guilty. Paid users of these services have carried out over 200,000 DDoS attacks both on individuals and organizations around the world.
Matthew Gatrel, 32, has been running DownThem and Ampnode since at least October 2014, according to court documents. The former offered DDoS attack capacity per subscription, while AmpNode provided bulletproof hosting to customers who needed preconfigured servers with DDoS attack tools and ready-made lists of vulnerable systems that could amplify the attack. Let me remind you that DownThem was closed in December 2018, and soon Gatrel was charged.
Gatrel’s customers were able to choose from several subscription options, each of which offered different capabilities (duration, power, and the possibility of simultaneous attacks). Investigators say DownThem had more than 2,000 registered customers in total and carried out over 200,000 DDoS attacks. Their goals ranged from individuals to schools, universities, municipal and local government websites, and financial institutions from around the world.
It is known that Gutrel did not manage these resources alone: he was assisted by 28-year-old Juan Martinez from Pasadena in administering the DownThem website. Martinez has already pleaded guilty and is now awaiting a verdict scheduled for December 2 this year. He faces up to 10 years in prison.
Now, after the conviction, Gathrel also faces a considerable term – up to 35 years in prison. The announcement of his verdict is scheduled for January 27, 2022.