An American truck driver has been fined $183,000 for participating in 'Distributed Denial of Service' (DDoS) attack online.
Eric Rosol, 38, from Wisconsin, was found to have taken part in the Anonymous-led operation to overload Kansas-based Koch Industries' website and take it offline, after its involvement in a dispute with trade unions.
DDoS attacks involve flooding a web server with automated requests for data in such volume that the site slows down or even collapses under the strain.
Rosol admitted using a program called Low Orbit Ion Cannon Code to lend his weight to the attack in 2011 - though only for a period of 60 seconds. The attack was carried out under the #OpWisconsin tag
At the time of the attack Anonymous posted a lengthy justification for the boycott, which claimed:
"Koch Industries, and oligarchs like them, have most recently started to manipulate the political agenda in Wisconsin... The Koch's have helped to fuel the unrest in Wisconsin and the drive behind the bill to eliminate the collective bargaining power of unions in a bid to gain a monopoly over the state's power supplies."
Rosol plead guilty to taking part, admitting one count of accessing a protected computer. But while the website was only taken down for 15 minutes in the subsequent attack, and cost the site's owners just $5,000 in direct losses, Rosol was sentenced to two years federal probation and ordered to pay the full cost of the company hiring a consultant to protect its site.
The company, which is involved in oil production and manufacturing, said the cost came to $183,000, and Rosol now must pay back that full amount.
None of the other participants in the attack have been caught.