Twitch, the Amazon-owned video streaming platform, is going on a hunt for the creator of a malicious spambot with all guns blazing. The company believes that the continued attacks are undermining its brand and thus, it is looking to try and stop the spammer. This mission, however, involves dragging some of the widely known technology giants to court.
The video streaming giant has filed a petition with the British Columbia courts last week, which puts PayPal, Cloudflare, Whois as well as telecommunications company Shaw Communications on notice. The petition, revealed by Ars Technica, is asking the court to help Twitch gain access to massive amounts of info about the ‘spambot creator’ from these technology giants. The notice period is 21 days, which is the duration of time they have to file a response.
Twitch has been investigating the spambot message attacks on its public chats for days, saying it spent hundreds of hours. Through the same, it has already deduced the basics of how the attacks are happening and who might be behind the same. And it has evidence that all the aforementioned services are being used to help the creator put the attack together — anonymously. It is asking them to reveal a piece of information associated with a particular IP addressed it has traced the attack back to.
As revealed by Twitch, the spam bots created by this developer have been flooding the public chats of some of the channels. The spam bots have struck over 1,000 channels with over 150k messages, which are offensive and repetitive. The spam bots were posting these messages at an average of 34 messages per minute, which went up to over 700 messages per minute for some channels. Some of these spam messages even contained racist and homophobic language, thus, violating the company’s community guidelines.
However, these were spam messages which could be picked up by Twitch’s AutoMod tool, but others involving sexual harassment and solicitation were also posted by these spam bots. There were no matches for such messages and were removed by the safety managers of the platform. Thus, Twitch is not planning to compromise on its brand image and is now looking to put an end to this menace.
Though, it is significantly surprising that Twitch is taking these companies associated with the attack (indirectly) to court to breach the privacy of an individual or a group. But, the video streaming giant is all out of options and wants to explore every opportunity to help protect their brand from dilution – that too due to a spammy bot. It is also necessary for the company as Facebook is gearing up to launch an all-out assault against such game streaming competitors with its Live service.