Indian student in US jailed for intentionally damaging 66 college computers

Washington: A 27-year-old Indian student has been sentenced to one year of imprisonment, to be followed by twelve months of supervised release, for intentionally damaging over 60 computers of a college in New York.

The youth, identified as Vishwanath Akuthota of Albany, was also ordered to pay USD 58,471 as restitution charge, United States Attorney Grant C Jaquith said on Tuesday.

Pleading guilty, Akuthota admitted that on February 14 he inserted a “USB Killer” device into 66 computers, as well as numerous computer monitors and computer-enhanced podiums, owned by the College of St Rose in Albany.

The device, when inserted into a computer’s USB port, sends a command causing the computer’s on-board capacitors to rapidly charge and then discharge repeatedly, thereby overloading and physically destroying the USB port and electrical system.

Akuthota is a citizen of India and was residing in the United States on a student visa. He has been in custody since his arrest in North Carolina on February 22.