Former student uses “USB Killer” device to destroy university computers

A former student at the College of St. Rose, in New York used a weaponized USB stick dubbed “USB Killer” to destroy 59 university computers and seven monitors that had open USB slots.

The sabotage ended up costing the university over $51,000 in computer damages and over $7,000 in employee time spent cleaning up the mess, according to a recent report by The Verge.

The former student, Vishwanath Akuthota, 27, is an Indian national in the U.S. who just completed an MBA. Akuthota plead guilty as revealed in a joint press release by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Albany Police Department (APD).

Akuthota filmed himself while destroying the computers with the USB Killer device. He also purchased the device online.

Once plugged into a PC’s open USB port, the USB Killer device sends a high voltage power surge into the connected PC and frys the system in a matter of seconds.

The former student faces up to ten years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 and a term of post-imprisonment supervised release of up to 3 years.

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