The Hackers’ group Anonymous has launched a major cyber offensive against Israel. The activists say their aim is to ‘disrupt and erase Israel from cyberspace’ in protest over Israeli policies towards Palestine. Former MI5 agent Annie Machon joins RT studio to give more perspective on the latest hacker attack and its implications.
Anonymous posts over 4000 U.S. bank executive credentials
Summary: Anonymous appears to have published login and private information from over 4000 American bank executive credentials its Operation Last Resort, demanding US computer crime law reform.
Anonymous appears to have published login and private information from over 4,000 American bank executive accounts in the name of its new Operation Last Resort campaign, demanding U.S. computer crime law reform.
A spreadsheet has been published on a .gov website allegedly containing login information and credentials, IP addresses, and contact information of American bank executives.
If true, it could be that Anonymous has released banker information that could be connected to Federal Reserve computers, including contact information and cell phone numbers for U.S. bank Presidents, Vice Presidents, COO’s Branch Managers, VP’s and more.
The website used in this attack belongs to the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center (ACJIC). The page extension URL is titled, “oops-we-did-it-again.”
The spreadsheet document contains usernames, names of individuals and their titles at banks across the U.S., hashed passwords (not passwords in plain text). It was placed on a .gov website and on Pastebin, and publicized via various Anonymous accounts on Twitter and Facebook.
A Reddit member called the numbers and commented,
OK, I called a few of them. What must be so problematic for the Federal Reserve is not the information so much as this file was stolen from their computers at all.
The ramifications of that kind of loss of control is severe.
Banks listed on the document claim credentials from management at community banks, community credit unions, and more, across the United States.
A visit to the bank websites on the document shows that these are current employees at each of the banks.
Anonymous stated in its first Operation Last Resort defacement last friday (ussc.gov) it had infiltrated multiple federal websites over a period of time. The hacktivist entity dropped enough technical details to make it clear that its tracks were covered and that Anonymous still had access to .gov websites.
Significance of Monday, February 4?
While today in the United States it is the day of a major American sporting event (the Superbowl), this Sunday night’s timing of Anon’s document release coincides with another event more important to the new Anonymous campaign Operation Last Resort – a campaign anchored on the Swartz tragedy.
After the Anonymous OpLastResort hacks last weekend, last Monday a House panel issued a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder (.pdf link) with seven specific questions, and demanding answers regarding the Swartz prosecution.
Tomorrow, Monday February 4, is the deadline for Attorney General Eric Holder to answer specific questions regarding the Aaron Swartz prosecution.
Anonymous may be focusing on that deadline, as well.
Previously on the defaced ussc.gov website Anonymous cited the recent suicide of hacktivist Aaron Swartz as a “line that has been crossed.”
The statement suggested retaliation for Swartz’s tragic suicide, which many – including the family – believe was a result of overzealous prosecution by the Department of Justice and what the family deemed a “bullying” use of outdated computer crime laws.
With the letter to Holder, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee requests a briefing with the Justice Department. CNET writes,
“Many questions have been raised about the appropriate level of punishment sought by prosecutors for Mr. Swartz’s alleged offenses, and how the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, cited in 11 of 13 counts against Mr. Swartz, should apply under similar circumstances,” [Reps. Issa and Cummings] say in the letter, which requests a briefing no later than February 4.
The letter is another voice from the Federal side of the discussion, joining a chorus led by Democratic congresswoman Rep. Zoe Lofgren who has authored a bill called “Aaron’s Law” that aims to change the 1984 Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (with which Swartz was being prosecuted).
Last friday February 1, Lofgren submitted a draft of the bill to be reviewed on Reddit. Ars Technica reported that after its online critique, a revised version of the bill was published today, with more far-reaching reforms.
Last weekend Anonymous commandeered the US Sentencing website to launch Operation Last Resort “warheads” (encrypted files suggested by Anonymous to be sensitive US government documents).
The defacement demanded reform on US computer crime laws, citing the January 11 tragic suicide of young hacker and digital rights activist Aaron Swartz.
- See also: Anonymous hacks US Sentencing Commission, distributes files
- Tragedy cited as cause behind the attacks: Hacker, Activist Aaron Swartz Commits Suicide
Anonymous spent last weekend playing cat-and-mouse with the Department of Justice after taking over the ussc.gov website (still decimated and now “under construction” over a week later).
After the US government regained control of the .gov website used in the hacks and defacements, Anonymous regained control of two .gov sites and turned the sites into a mocking video game of Asteroids.
Public interest in Sunday’s Asteroids game created a crowdsourced DDoS, downing the websites for days.
It is possible that banks and user information on tonight’s new “oops we did it again” document may be connected to accounts at The Fed (The Federal Reserve Bank).
The Fed has a collection of services called Fedline, which operates at highly critical junctures across the U.S. banking system.
For instance, one of the services offered by Fedline is money and funding transfers via the U.S. Federal Reserve.
It enables financial institutions to transfer funds between member participants. These participants are estimated to be around more than 9,000 financial entities (such as banks).
Fedline is the primary U.S. network for high value, time-critical and international payments.
In 2007 the estimated average daily value of funds transferred via Fedline products was 2.7 trillion (an estimated 537,000 payments daily, the average was over $5 million per transaction).
At this point, the information on the document is unverified and exactly what banking systems the information may affect is not known. ZDNet will update this article with new information as it becomes known.
The Operation Last Resort video, posted Friday on the U.S. Sentencing Commission website now has 1,183,000 views.
It is interesting to note that this second “official” #OpLastResort salvo does not cite AntiSec, as seen in the Asteroids game.
Anonymous appears intent to influence federal action – one way or another.
Citizens of the world,
Anonymous has observed for some time now the trajectory of justice in the United States with growing concern. We have marked the departure of this system from the noble ideals in which it was born and enshrined. We have seen the erosion of due process, the dilution of constitutional rights, the usurpation of the rightful authority of courts by the “discretion” of prosecutors. We have seen how the law is wielded less and less to uphold justice, and more and more to exercise control, authority and power in the interests of oppression or personal gain.
We have been watching, and waiting.
Two weeks ago today, a line was crossed. Two weeks ago today, Aaron Swartz was killed. Killed because he faced an impossible choice. Killed because he was forced into playing a game he could not win — a twisted and distorted perversion of justice — a game where the only winning move was not to play.
Anonymous immediately convened an emergency council to discuss our response to this tragedy. After much heavy-hearted discussion, the decision was upheld to engage the United States Department of Justice and its associated executive branches in a game of a similar nature, a game in which the only winning move is not to play.
Last year the Federal Bureau of Investigation revelled in porcine glee at its successful infiltration of certain elements of Anonymous. This infiltration was achieved through the use of the *same tactics which lead to Aaron Swartz’ death. It would not have been possible were it not for the power of federal prosecutors to thoroughly destroy the lives of any hacktivists they apprehend through the very real threat of highly disproportionate sentencing.
As a result of the FBI’s infiltration and entrapment tactics, several more of our brethren now face similar disproportionate persecution, the balance of their lives hanging on the severely skewed scales of a broken justice system.
We have felt within our hearts a burning rage in reaction to these events, but we have not allowed ourselves to be drawn into a foolish and premature response. We have bidden our time, operating in the shadows, adapting our tactics and honing our abilities. We have allowed the FBI and its masters in government — both the puppet and the shadow government that controls it — to believe they had struck a crippling blow to our infrastructure, that they had demoralized us, paralyzed us with paranoia and fear. We have held our tongue and waited.
With Aaron’s death we can wait no longer. The time has come to show the United States Department of Justice and its affiliates the true meaning of infiltration. The time has come to give this system a taste of its own medicine. The time has come for them to feel the helplessness and fear that comes with being forced into a game where the odds are stacked against them.
This website was chosen due to the symbolic nature of its purpose — the federal sentencing guidelines which enable prosecutors to cheat citizens of their constitutionally-guaranteed right to a fair trial, by a jury of their peers — the federal sentencing guidelines which are in clear violation of the 8th amendment protection against cruel and unusual punishments. This website was also chosen due to the nature of its visitors. It is far from the only government asset we control, and we have exercised such control for quite some time…
There has been a lot of fuss recently in the technological media regarding such operations as Red October, the widespread use of vulnerable browsers and the availability of zero-day exploits for these browsers and their plugins. None of this comes of course as any surprise to us, but it is perhaps good that those within the information security industry are making the extent of these threats more widely understood.
Still there is nothing quite as educational as a well-conducted demonstration…
Through this websites and various others that will remain unnamed, we have been conducting our own infiltration. We did not restrict ourselves like the FBI to one high-profile compromise. We are far more ambitious, and far more capable. Over the last two weeks we have wound down this operation, removed all traces of leakware from the compromised systems, and taken down the injection apparatus used to detect and exploit vulnerable machines.
We have enough fissile material for multiple warheads. Today we are launching the first of these. Operation Last Resort has begun…
Warhead – U S – D O J – L E A – 2013 . A E E 256 is primed and armed. It has been quietly distributed to numerous mirrors over the last few days and is available for download from this website now. We encourage all Anonymous to syndicate this file as widely as possible.
The contents are various and we won’t ruin the speculation by revealing them. Suffice it to say, everyone has secrets, and some things are not meant to be public. At a regular interval commencing today, we will choose one media outlet and supply them with heavily redacted partial contents of the file. Any media outlets wishing to be eligible for this program must include within their reporting a means of secure communications.
We have not taken this action lightly, nor without consideration of the possible consequences. Should we be forced to reveal the trigger-key to this warhead, we understand that there will be collateral damage. We appreciate that many who work within the justice system believe in those principles that it has lost, corrupted, or abandoned, that they do not bear the full responsibility for the damages caused by their occupation.
It is our hope that this warhead need never be detonated.
However, in order for there to be a peaceful resolution to this crisis, certain things need to happen. There must be reform of outdated and poorly-envisioned legislation, written to be so broadly applied as to make a felony crime out of violation of terms of service, creating in effect vast swathes of crimes, and allowing for selective punishment. There must be reform of mandatory minimum sentencing. There must be a return to proportionality of punishment with respect to actual harm caused, and consideration of motive and mens rea. The inalienable right to a presumption of innocence and the recourse to trial and possibility of exoneration must be returned to its sacred status, and not gambled away by pre-trial bargaining in the face of overwhelming sentences, unaffordable justice and disfavourable odds. Laws must be upheld unselectively, and not used as a weapon of government to make examples of those it deems threatening to its power.
For good reason the statue of lady justice is blindfolded. No more should her innocence be besmirked, her scales tipped, nor her swordhand guided. Furthermore there must be a solemn commitment to freedom of the internet, this last great common space of humanity, and to the common ownership of information to further the common good.
We make this statement do not expect to be negotiated with; we do not desire to be negotiated with. We understand that due to the actions we take we exclude ourselves from the system within which solutions are found. There are others who serve that purpose, people far more respectable than us, people whose voices emerge from the light, and not the shadows. These voices are already making clear the reforms that have been necessary for some time, and are outright required now.
It is these people that the justice system, the government, and law enforcement must engage with. Their voices are already ringing strong with a chorus of determined resolution. We demand only that this chorus is not ignored. We demand the government does not make the mistake of hoping that time will dampen its ringing, that they can ride out this wave of determination, that business as usual can continue after a sufficient period of lip-service and back-patting.
Not this time. This time there will be change, or there will be chaos…
I have it from good sources that Anonymous has erased all records of SSS ever working for the CIA in retaliation for his continued support of Edward Bernays and the United Fruit Guatamelan coup. His obscene government pension will no longer be paid. He will be forced to slum it on public golf courses from now on.
CIA hack exposes agency’s computer system vulnerability to attack
The CIA website was hit in a series of attacks conducted by the elusive hacker group that previously targeted US law enforcement agencies in response to the “crack down” of Occupy movement protestors. As reported earlier, Anonymous took credit for hitting the websites of the US Department of Homeland Security, which was quickly revived, and the FBI.
The CIA seems less prepared for fighting Anonymous than other agencies as it’s website fell rather quickly according to various reports.
If the work of dhs.gov was revived in mere minutes, the CIA’s site was still down hours after the attacks.
JUST FOR LAUGHS?
One of the twitter accounts affiliated with Anonymous explained the reasons of the attack: “We do it for the lulz,” referring to the popular online abbreviation “for laughs.”
In previous occasions Anonymous has orchestrated attacks against websites using what are called “distributed denial of services attacks”.
The technique also known as a DDoS, is a concentrated effort by multiple individuals to make a network busy to its intended users.
A denial-of-service attack (DoS attack) or “distributed denial-of-service attack” (DDoS attack) is an attempt to make a computer or network resource unavailable to its intended users. Although the means to carry out, motives for, and targets of a DoS attack may vary, it generally consists of the concerted efforts of a person, or multiple people to prevent an Internet site or service from functioning efficiently or at all, temporarily or indefinitely. Perpetrators of DoS attacks typically target sites or services hosted on high-profile web servers such as banks, credit card payment gateways, and even root nameservers.
The term is generally used relating to computer networks, but is not limited to this field; for example, it is also used in reference to CPU resource management.
The United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) defines symptoms of denial-of-service attacks to include:
Unusually slow network performance(opening files or accessing web sites)
Unavailability of a particular web site
Inability to access any web site
Dramatic increase in the number of spam emails received—(this type of DoS attack is considered an e-mail bomb)
Denial-of-service attacks can also lead to problems in the network ‘branches’ around the actual computer being attacked. For example, the bandwidth of a router between the Internet and a LAN may be consumed by an attack, compromising not only the intended computer, but also the entire network.
If the attack is conducted on a sufficiently large scale, entire geographical regions of Internet connectivity can be “compromised” without the attacker’s knowledge or intent by incorrectly configured or flimsy network infrastructure equipment.
“Computers are basically overwhelmed in such attacks”, says Jack Smack, a teen hacker in Charlotte, N.C.
Even though DDoS attacks are a violation of the Internet Architecture Board’s proper use policy, it has become an effective tool for Anonymous to target law enforcement authorities and drug cartels.
This is not the first time Anonymous takes down cia.gov. In June, as part of a 51-day-long hacking spree, the Anonymous affiliated group LulzSec took down the CIA’s site for a few hours. The reason was the same as today: “For the lulz.”
Two weeks ago, the online group also released an audio of a conference call between the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and Britain’s Scotland Yard counterpart targeting members of the largely untraceable group.
It was done as part of the F*ckFBIFriday campaign, hackers downed the official website for the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States cia.gov.
At approximately 3:10 p.m. Eastern standard time one of twitter accounts related to the hackers’ group announced “cia.gov DOWN. #UMAD?#Anonymous.”
“This was meant to convey a message”, said Whitey Neumann of Charlotte, who has been studying the tactics of Anonymous in an attempt to better understand the group.
Last week we found out the FBI also got hacked.
Along with the “top secret audio leaks”, numerous other sites fell victim to Anonymous’ hack attacks including entertainment corporations and government sites.
The websites for the US Department of Justice and Universal Music Group were among the first to go, with the sites for US Copyright Office, Warner Music, BMI, and RIAA following suit shortly after.
These attacks were in retaliation for a raid on “Megaupload”, where the feds raided the file sharing service site which led to more than 20 warrants being served and several arrests internationally. This was viewed unfavorably by members of Anonymous.
Anonymous is completely decentralized and its members operate covertly. Members of Anonymous could be anywhere, could be anyone. Traditionally known as F*ckFBIFriday, into F*ckCIAFriday, as hackers shut down the official website for the Central Intelligence Agency of the United States cia.gov.
At approximately 3:10 p.m. Eastern time one of twitter accounts related to the hackers’ group announced “cia.gov DOWN. #UMAD?#Anonymous.” This corresponded to the time when the CIA was attacked.
CIA VULNERABLITY ON DISPLAY FOR THE WHOLE WORD TO SEE
“It must be hugely embarrassing for the CIA to be attacked by a denial of service attack and be caught with its proverbial pants down”, says Tom Smith of Charlotte, who said the attack bring to light just how vulnerable the CIA is to hackers. “In a way this is a good thing, because the CIA can use this to help close gaps in its systems and upgrade its security”, he said.
“What else was compromised in the hack of CIA”, says Erin Van Kamp of Charlotte, a computer security experts.
Defending against Denial of Service attacks typically involves the use of a combination of attack detection, traffic classification and response tools, aiming to block traffic that they identify as illegitimate and allow traffic that they identify as legitimate.
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