Home Alleged Anonymous Members Arrested: This Week in Hacking

Alleged Anonymous Members Arrested: This Week in Hacking

Alleged members of Anonymous arrested. In December of last year, three Dutch teenagers were arrested; in January of this year, British police arrested five alleged members of the hacking collective; another British teen was arrested in June; and now, in the U.S., the Federal Bureau of Investigation has arrested 16 people across the country and served 35 search warrants in the course of a series of raids. Those arrests were followed up by that of “Topiary,” an alleged Anonymous spokesperson with connection to LulzSec, at his home in Scotland’s Shetland Islands.

Those arrested have been charged with conspiracy, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine, and with intentional damage to a protected computer, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

Anonymous targets Israeli parliament. Despite recent troubles, Anonymous is planning “Operation Intifada,” a distributed denial of service attack on the Knesset. The efficacy of the group’s hacks is debatable. If past activities are any indication, the parliament’s website may be down, or partially down, for between an hour and a day, though Israel is not the same kind of target that, say Zimbabwe was.

Anonymous leads PayPal boycott. The group, which is owning this week’s hacking news, has launched “Operation PayPal,” a boycott action against the online payment company. PayPal was a prior target of an Anonymous DDoS attack due to its refusal to handle payments to Wikileaks. (Remember them?)

Anonymous and LulzSec lead Pwnie nominations. They go head to head in competition for “Most Epic FAIL” and “Epic 0wnage.” The Pwnies – pronounced “ponies” and whose award is a golden My Little Pony statuette – “is an annual awards ceremony celebrating the achievements and failures of security researchers and the security community.” This summer’s ceremony, the fifth annual, will take place on August 3 at the Black Hat Technical Security Conference at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas.

4.8 million documents stolen from JSTOR, 18K academic papers uploaded to Pirate BayT. An archive containing over 18,000 scientific papers, downloaded from the academic journal database JSTOR, has been uploaded to The Pirate Bay, where they’re now available as a torrent.

The papers were uploaded by a user named Greg Maxwell who says that his decision to make the large quantity of scientific papers available was a response to the indictment earlier this week of early Reddit-er and Demand Progress founder Aaron Swartz. Swartz has been charged with felony hacking and computer fraud for downloading some 4.8 million papers from JSTOR and faces 35 years in prison.

Chinese journalist attacked by hackers. Zhao Hejuan, a reporter for the Beijing-based Caixin Media, saw her Gmail account hacked. Hejuan was sent a Gmail security alert by Google on July 21, according to a statement by her company. She was in the midst of a story on child trafficking for Caixin Magazine. The attack originated from the same region where Zhao was reporting, Longhui county in Hunan Province. Subsequent investigation showed she had been hacked every day since July 19.

Webcam photo by Cory Doctorow

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