The hacking collective known as Anonymous has pulled off yet another embarrassing attack against the United States government. While most people were enjoying Super Bowl 47 on Sunday, the group published login and private information belonging to more than 4,000 American bank executives on the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center website. The file contained names, titles, email addresses, physical addresses, fax numbers, mobile phone numbers, login IDs, IP addresses, hashed password and other details. It is widely believed that the information was obtained from computers belonging to the Federal Reserve. The attack is said to be a response to the suicide of Aaron Swartz and part of Anonymous’ Operation Last Resort campaign, which demands that the U.S. reform its computer crime laws. The group previously targeted the United States Sentencing Commission (USSC) and took its website offline.
Security firm McAfee Labs released its annual Threat Predictions report this week, highlighting the potential malware, viruses and other security concerns we may see in 2013. The firm says that with the rise of more advanced mobile devices, smartphones and tablets will become an even larger focus for cybercriminals. This past year we saw a number of high-profile attacks from the hacktivist group Anonymous that had the National Security Agency on edge, however McAfee Labs believes the group will begin to decline due to “incoordination and competition” from more politically-motivated hackers. It has also been predicted that the threat of large-scale attacks such as Stuxnet, which is believed to have taken down Iran’s computer infrastructure earlier this year, will increase as well.
Anonymous has declared cyber war against the embattled Syrian government just one day after the country sparked outrage by shutting down its citizens’ Internet access. As Network World reports, Anonymous has vowed to attack “all Web assets belonging to the Assad regime that are NOT hosted in Syria” in retaliation for the country’s suppression of its citizens’ digital communications. Anonymous said that the Syrian government’s actions were particularly rash because it had “physically severed the fiber-optic and coaxial cables coming into Syria” which is “not damage that can be easily or quickly repaired.” The hacker collective said its first target will be a website belonging to Syria’s embassy in China.
Hackers associated with the group Anonymous have threatened Zynga (ZNGA) for “the outrageous treatment of their employees and their actions against many developers.” The group is angry with the company’s latest round of layoffs, calling them “an insult to the population” and an “end of the U.S. game market.” The Anonymous members plan to release confidential documents it has obtained that suggest Zygna will be moving jobs to more “convenient financial countries.” The group has also said that it unless the company abondons these plans, it will release all the games it has stolen from its servers for free. The group has given Zynga until November 5th, also known as Guy Fawkes Day, to comply with its demands. Hackers inside of Anonymous have previously threatened to attack other companies such as Facebook (FB) although its attempts have been fairly unsuccessful so far.
“You’ve changed, Wikileaks. You used to just be about the hacking!” That’s basically the message that hacker collective Anonymous delivered to WikiLeaks this week, as Anonymous sought to distance itself from Julian Assange’s website in a statement posted on its Twitter account. As The Guardian reports, Anonymous “described WikiLeaks as ‘the one man Julian Assange show’ after the website began asking users to pay for access to millions of leaked documents.” The group went on to decry Assange’s current celebrity status as antithetical to WikiLeaks’ original purpose. More →
Hackers who are purportedly part of Anonymous last week claimed to have stolen more than 12 million unique identifiers belonging to various Apple (AAPL) devices. The hackers claimed that the IDs were obtained from a compromised FBI laptop, although both Apple and the FBI denied the report. But now a small Florida-based publishing company called BlueToad has admitted to NBC News on Monday that the stolen data had been obtained from its own servers. BlueToad technicians downloaded the data released by Anonymous and found a 98% correlation rate between the leaked information and its own data. More →
Following reports that claimed the popular torrent website Demonoid was taken down by the Ukrainian government as a gift to the United States, notorious hacking group Anonymous announced plans for retaliation. On Tuesday, the group took down websites belonging to the National Television and Radio Broadcasting Council of Ukraine, the Ukrainian Agency for Copyright and Related Rights, and the Ukrainian Anti-Piracy Association, ZDNet reported. “We can no longer sit around and watch this censorship happen right in front of us,” the group said in a video announcement. “Ukrainian Government, you have committed a crime against Humanity & Freedom. We will not tolerate this. We will take direct actions against you and your criminal friends until you realize the crimes you’ve committed and restore our beloved Demonoid.” It has also been reported that Demonoid’s operators are under investigation for copyright infringement in Mexico, and it is unclear if the site will ever return to the Web. Anonymous’s announcement follows below. More →
Anonymous isn’t all about Guy Fawkes masks and news casts with creepy automated voices; sometimes it’s about helping others. As Network World’s Paul McNamara reports, some Anonymous hackers have gone to bat for the Red Sky Film & Television charity that’s aimed at eradicating hunger among New Zealand’s children. Apparently, a lone wolf hacker who was trying to impress Anonymous hacked into the Red Sky site and severely vandalized it, thus sparking a campaign on Facebook to find the perpetrator. More →
Memo to foolhardy companies: Anonymous does not like having its Intellectual Property rights violated. The Register reports that the famed hacker collective is in a state of outrage because a French company called E-Flicker has filed a copyright application for Anonymous’s official headless-man logo and slogan. More →
The U.S. Government and various global authorities label “Anonymous” as cyberterrorist and criminals, but others refer to the group as freedom fighters and protectors of free speech. The notorious hackers’ most recent operation, however, may change some people’s opinions of them. Anonymous has declared war on the deepest and most twisted parts of the Internet — chat sites used by paedophiles to trade images. More →
Anonymous hackers have released more than 1,000 email credentials from five multinational oil companies that the group accuses of being responsible for the melting polar ice caps. The companies targeted include Shell, Exxon, BP, and Russian firms Gazprom and Rosneft, TheNextWeb reported. While most of the information is encrypted, the hackers have posted it online with the hope that like-minded individuals will help crack the security and obtain the passwords for the corresponding email addresses. The information was reportedly obtained through shell domains and other sub-domains, and was made available due to poor website management. More →
Notorious hacker-activist group Anonymous is back with another operation that aims to strike fear into the hearts of lawmakers in the European Union. While the operation does not involve any cyberattacks, Anonymous is attempting to rally supporters for a massive protest on July 28th. The group is protesting the EU-backed research project INDECT, which looks to develop technology that can automatically detect criminal threats by analyzing conspicuous behavior online and in real life through various surveillance measures. Opponents of the project contend that it is an invasion of privacy that collects data illegally. “We have been accepting the claims of disclosure of our private data for too long in order to prevent acts of terrorism,” Anonymous said in a video posted on YouTube. “People started to accept being treated as potential terrorists or criminals, being more and more deprived of their basic rights, and allowing the surveillance society to gain increased control over them.” Anonymous’s video follows below. More →
It’s no mystery that the hackers behind notorious “hacktivist” groups Anonymous and LulzSec cause a tremendous amount of trouble for the companies and agencies they target, but thousands of young web users cheer them on with the belief that these groups are fighting for Internet freedom around the world. According to a recent profile, however, this isn’t always the case. In a rare in-depth interview with Anonymous members, The Daily Beast’s Parmy Olson uncovers the dark side of Anonymous, likening the divide between the group’s activist members and its pranksters to Batman and the Joker. While some Anonymous members indeed look to topple oppressors, others simply “try to cause chaos, lulz, whatever to have fun.” And while many hacker activists continue to fight the good fight, as they view it, the more playful Anonymous hackers are skeptical that they will ever really make a difference. “I don’t think [Anonymous] can change much in the world,” one group member told The Daily Beast. Parmy’s full interview is linked below. More →