A Canadian man is facing federal charges after allegedly flooding over 1,000 Twitch channels with 150,000 spam messages early last year. The messages, which included racial and antisemitic slurs, spurred the British Columbian supreme court to issue a criminal charge for “mischief in relation to computer data” in early December, CBC reports. He could face up to ten years in prison.
In February and March 2017, 20-year-old Brandan Apple allegedly used the Twitch spam service ChatSurge to send offensive messages to Twitch streamers. ChatSurge purports to “flood, destroy or simply demolish any Twitch.tv chatroom,” a tutorial video explains.
After the attack, Twitch filed a court order to determine Apple’s identity. The order details some of the egregious messages sent by the chatbot, including “Death to all jews Death to all jews,” “Allah hates Gays KappaPride” and “We wanna see gameplay not those big jugs.” Some messages linked to sexual content including children. Twitch’s court filing alleges that, at points, Apple was sending up to 700 messages a minute.
Twitch found Apple after petitioning the British Columbian supreme court to put pressure on sites like CloudFlare and Whois Privacy, which Apple is said to have used on his spamming sprees. Employees at Twitch had previously spent nearly 200 hours tracking him down, Twitch’s court filing says.
CBC reports that Apple has not filed a defense or a plea. In addition to the criminal charge, the Canadian supreme court last year issued an order that prevents Apple from making or sharing bots, crawlers, robots or other harmful software intended to muck up Twitch channels.