Canadian man charged with creating army of spambots on Twitch

Twitch logo on wall

A B.C. man has been accused of using an army of ‘spambots’ to overwhelm live streaming platform Twitch.

The Amazon-owned service is one of the most popular sites for video game-related videos, with an estimated 212 million views on the platform last year.

In addition to facing charges of “mischief in relation to computer data,” the individual, Brandan Lukus Apple, is also subject to a civil order restraining him from creating or selling “any robot, bot, crawler, spider, blacklisting software or other software” that target Twitch.

A Port Coquitlam court filing from December notes that Apple is accused of “wilfully causing multiple repetitive messages to be transmitted.”

According to the filing, thousands of Twitch broadcasters were assaulted with a slew of offensive comments including racist and homophobic content between February and May of 2017.

The civil action alleges that 1,000 broadcaster channels were attacked with around 150,000 messages.

The Supreme Court documents define a spambot to be “a computer program used to send unsolicited messages (or spam) via email or other online forums.” Twitch says such a flood of messages will overwhelm its chat service and disrupt a broadcaster’s stream.

“Twitch has received hundreds of individual reports regarding spam messages containing racism, homophobia, sexual harassment, links to shock imagery, false implications of view-botting and soliciting child sex exploitation material,” reads the civil action.

Apple has yet not entered in a plea which has not been proven in court. Apple will appear in court next month.

Via: CBC