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An Indian-origin Computer Science Student Charged with Cyber-Attacks in US

An Indian-origin computer science student of 26-year-old has been charged with initiating a number of cyber-attacks on a chat site in the US

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Washington, December 14, 2016: An Indian-origin computer science student of 26-year-old has been charged with initiating a number of cyber-attacks on a chat site in the US.

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United States Attorney Brian J Stretch and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Special Agent in Charge John F Bennett said, “Sean Krishanmakoto Sharma has been indicted for transmitting a programme, information, code, or command causing damage to a protected computer.”

The indictment accuses the computer science student of initiating a number of attacks on a local provider of online chat services.

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According to the indictment, “Between November 6, 2014 and January 20, 2015, Sharma, used a “distributed denial of service (DDoS) tool to compromise the computers of a San Francisco-based company that provides online chat services to third party web sites.”

On December 9, Sharma was arrested. US Attorney’s Office, Northern District of California said in a statement that he was released on a USD 100,000 bond.

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Sharma will face a sentence of ten years in prison, maximum and three years of supervised release, and/or a fine, if he is convicted.

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Stronger Encryption is The Best Way to Prevent Cyber Attacks, say Apple

Apple and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation engaged in a showdown in 2016 over the iPhone used by an assailant in the San Bernardino terror attack

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Top apps using Siri Shortcuts to make daily tasks easier: Apple. Pixabay

Countering a common argument that strong encryption may come in the way of well-meaning investigation of criminal activities, Apple has stressed that stronger — not weaker — encryption is the best way to protect against threats of cyber attacks and terrorism.

In a letter to the Australian government, the Cupertino, California-headquartered tech giant asserted that encryption was in fact a benefit and public good, The Verge reported on Friday.

Apple was specifically responding to a bill designed to five government easy access to the devices and data of criminals during investigations.

The tech giant said it takes technology’s role in protecting national security and citizens’s lives extremely seriously.

“Every day, over a trillion transactions occur safely over the internet as a result of encrypted communications,” Apple said in its letter while responding to the Australian Parliament’s Assistance and Access Bill.

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An Apple store in Woodbridge, Virginia. (VOA)

“Criminals and terrorists who want to infiltrate systems and disrupt sensitive networks may start their attacks by accessing just one person’s smartphone. In the face of these threats, this is no time to weaken encryption.”

While Apple was not outright condemning the bill, it, however, attempted to make the case that “the draft legislation remains dangerously ambiguous with respect to encryption and security” The Verge report added.

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Apple and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation engaged in a showdown in 2016 over the iPhone used by an assailant in the San Bernardino terror attack.

The FBI had to seek third-party help after Apple refused to assist the investigating agency unlock the phone. (IANS)

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