Calin Mateias, a Romanian hacker who was extradited to the United States on November 20 after being indicted for launching DDoS attacks against Blizzard’s World of Warcraft servers, has been sentenced to one year in federal prison. Additionally, Mateias will have to pay $29,987 to Blizzard to compensate it for the time spent countering his DDoS attacks against World of Warcraft.
Mateias pleaded guilty to one count of intentional damage to a protected computer back in February. Mateias launched his DDoS attacks between February and September 2010, usually after having disputes with other players in the game. His attacks on the World of Warcraft European servers made it impossible for some subscribers to access the game at all.
Blizzard’s successful case against Mateias isn’t the only court case it has won recently. Just last year, the company won a lawsuit against Overwatch cheatmaker Bossland, who was ordered to pay $8,563,600 in restitution.
From the Bossland case to this more recent case against Mateias, Blizzard has made it clear that it will passionately protect its assets, and is serious about fighting back against DDoS attacks and cheating.
This should come as no surprise, as cheating in Blizzard’s online games can ruin the experience for other paying customers, potentially harming its reputation in the process. DDoS attacks can also impact Blizzard’s bottom line, and since World of Warcraft has been the target of numerous DDoS attacks over the years, it makes sense for the company to crack down on this behavior.
However, it remains to be seen if Mateias’s sentence will be enough to convince others to think twice before launching DDoS attacks on online video games. While it may prevent one hacker from attacking the game’s servers, others may think that they will still be able to get away with it.
DDoS attacks may continue to plague World of Warcraft and other online games moving forward, but attackers can expect Blizzard to pursue similar legal action against them if they are caught.
World of Warcraft is available now for PC.
Source: United States Department of Justice