A British Columbia man faces criminal charges for allegedly targeting over 1,000 Twitch channels with more than 150,000 spam messages containing racism, antisemitism, homophobia, and sexual harassment. A 20-year-old called Brandan Apple has been charged with “mischief in relation to computer data,” which is punishable by up to ten years in prison.
These criminal charges come as a result of a petition from Twitch to Canadian authorities early in 2017 in order to track down the person responsible for the mass spamming. Twitch said the attacks were “undermining its brand, according to documents posted by Ars Technica at the time. The company traced those attacks to a program called ChatSurge, which aims to “just simply demolish any TwitchTV chatroom!”
The messages Twitch referred to include things like “Death to to all jews,” “Allah hates Gays KappaPride,” and “Get the black guy outta here.” In addition to the examples shown, Twitch said the “over 375 user reports” they’d received also included “false implications of viewbotting and soliciting child sex exploitation material.”
According to CBC News, Apple is currently subject to a civil order which restrains him from distributing “any robot, bot, crawler, spider, blacklisting software or other software” aimed at Twitch. This is in addition to the criminal charge.
Apple has not entered a plea regarding the mischief charge. His next court appearance is set for February.