- The Washington Times - Friday, February 21, 2020

A California man was arrested Friday and charged with orchestrating several cyberattacks on the website of a California congressional candidate.

Arthur Jan Dam, 32, is charged with one count of intentionally damaging and attempting to damage a protected computer. If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in federal prison.

Prosecutors say Mr. Dam staged four cyberattacks in April and May 2018 in what’s known as a distributed denial of service, or DDoS attack. That’s when a targeted computer is flooded with superfluous requests to overload the system, blocking legitimate requests from being fulfilled.

The attacks shut down the unnamed candidate’s website for 21 hours and cost their campaign as much as $30,000 to respond to the attacks.

The candidate blamed the attack for their loss in the 2018 primary election.

In October 2018, it was widely reported that the FBI was investigating cyberattacks on two Democratic candidates for Congress in California. Neither candidate won their primary.

David Min was defeated in the June primary for California’s 45th Congressional District while Hans Keirstead lost his bid for California’s 48th District.

It is unclear if either candidate was the victim of Mr. Dam’s alleged cyberattack.

“Law enforcement at all levels has pledged to ensure the integrity of every election,” said United States Attorney for the Central District of California Nick Hanna. “We will not tolerate interference with computer systems associated with candidates or voting.

Mr. Dam was married to a woman who worked for a rival congressional candidate, according to court documents. Neither the defendant’s wife nor the congressional candidate, who ultimately won the election, were aware of the cyberattacks, Mr. Hanna said.

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