SEATTLE - A Minnesota man was sentenced Friday to 18 months in prison and 10 months of community service after pleading guilty to crippling nearly 50,000 computers by unleashing a variant of the "Blaster" Internet worm in the summer of 2003.
Jeffrey Lee Parson, 19, of Hopkins, Minn., was a high school senior using the computer name "teekid" when he modified the worm. He initially pleaded not guilty, but changed his plea last summer to one count of intentionally causing or attempting to cause damage to a protected computer.
U.S. District Judge Marsha Pechman said she was sentencing him at the low end of the agreed-upon range because although he was 18 at the time of the attack, his maturity level was much younger than that.
Parson will serve his time at a low-security prison.
I have long held the position that those who intentionally set out to destroy people's computers should be given a minimum of 25 years in prison. This will be a deterrent to those who will try to create viruses in the future. These viruses cause much damage to many computers and many are poor and can't afford new ones. This punk got off with a slap on the wrist while causing a lot of heartache for a lot of people. One day a virus is going to cause deaths when the bug will get into hospital computers and then will the courts be lenient to someone with crocodile tears?