SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — A University of Southern California computer science graduate student has been arrested and charged with conducting a denial-of-service attack on a San Francisco chat-service company, federal prosecutors announced Monday.
Sean Sharma, 26, of La Canada, is in a master’s degree program at USC.READ MORE: 3 Teens Accused Of Killing Man, Stealing His Dog & Car In San Francisco On New Year's Eve
A federal grand jury in San Francisco charged him on Dec. 1 with one count of transmitting a program, information, code, or command causing damage to a protected computer.
The indictment was filed under seal and was unsealed after Sharma’s arrest in La Canada last Friday, according to Abraham Simmons, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Francisco.
Simmons said the indictment alleges that Sharma used a denial-of-service tool to initiate a number of attacks on the unidentified company between November 2014 and January 2015.READ MORE: San Francisco Police Preparing to Handle Niner Fan Festivities on Sunday
The victim company provides online chat services to third-party websites, prosecutors said.
After being arrested, Sharma made an initial appearance before a federal magistrate in Los Angeles and was released on a $100,000 bond, Simmons said.
He is due to be arraigned before U.S. Magistrate Jacqueline Scott Corley in San Francisco on Friday.
If convicted of the charge, Sharma would face a potential maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.MORE NEWS: IRS Website Will Soon Require Facial Recognition To Log Into Your Account
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