32 Anonymous Hackers Detained, Investigation of LulzSec Grows

Posted by BBC News on Jun 14th, 2011 and filed under Latest News Update, Tech News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

With information Edit Postof 35 alleged Anonymous members currently being detained by the authorities, many analysts have come to question just how long it will be until finally LulzSec finds itself in law enforcement agencies firing lines right after its high-profile cyber attack on the U.S. Senate.

The group LulzSec has been around for some time, though it only really caught the general public’s attention last month while it began its ongoing struggle with tech giant Sony.

Since then the group moved on to target quite a few other games companies, including Nintendo and Bethesda Softworks.

It was just this week that the group went back to its previous behavior of targeting government owned sites. First hacking the U.K.’s National Health Service and then, as documented earlier today, the U.S. Senate.

Since the cyber security infringement went public, representatives at the U.S. Senate have clarified that the group only was able to break into the public portion of the Senate’s internet site. Senate representatives stated that LulzSec did not not manage to break the firewall protecting the more sensitive portion of the network.

LulzSec’s post mentioned a possible motivation for its attack as being the U.S. government’s current policy of treating all cyber attacks in the same manner as a real-world attack:

“We don’t like the US government very much. Their ships are weak, their lulz are low, and their sites aren’t very secure. In an attempt to help them fix their issues, we’ve decided to donate additional lulz in the form of owning them some more!

“This is a little, just-for-kicks release of some internal data from Senate.gov – is this an act of war, gentlemen? Problem?”

Since its broadly speculated involvement in the initial cyber attack on Sony’s PlayStation Network, the hacking collective Anonymous has moved on to target numerous government owned sites.

The very first reports of believed members detention came from Spain, where Spanish authorities reported catching three suspected members.

Since then an amazing 32 further potential members were reported as being detained by Turkish authorities — Turkish agents are yet to discharge information about how many of the people detained are actual Anonymous members.

The 32 believed associates were found after Turkish prosecutors and police launched raids in 12 of the country’s provinces this Monday.

Local news sources have since documented the raids as a response to the “distributed denial of service” assaults Anonymous has mounted against Turkish telecoms regulators.

DDoS attacks are a form of cyber assault that use large numbers of computers to overload a website with requests. They are designed to clog the computer and its network causing them to crash.

Anonymous has on quite a few occasions reported its attacks as being inspired by political concerns. In regard to Turkey, the group cited its worries about the Turkish government’s elevated monitoring of its citizens internet use.

The group has since cited specific mishaps where the Turkish Government has gone so far as to completely block certain websites:

“Over the last few years, we have seen how the Turkish government has tightened its grip on the internet.

“Accessing and taking part in the free flow of information is a basic human right. Anonymous will not stand by while the Turkish government violates this right.”

The attacks on Turkey’s regulators are not the first Anonymous have done for political reasons.

The collection has a history of politically encouraged attacks having previously targeted the websites of Iran and pre-revolution Tunisia and Egypt.

Speculation as to whether LulzSec may have gone one step too far subsequent its cyber attack on the U.S. Senate has since expanded.

The group consistently tried to portray itself as a motley crew of “ninja pirates”. The team even celebrates its exploits not just by displaying them on its website and Twitter page, but also seemingly in song, releasing its own music video on YouTube.

While a few have seen the group’s activities as entertaining, or even praise worthy when focusing on a private company, the standard reaction to its attack on the U.S. Senate has on the whole been less favorable.

While the FBI — as well as several other law enforcement agencies — were investigating LulzSec’s reported cyber attacks, it is most likely that as a result of the group’s return to targeting government agency’s and department’s websites, these investigations may — like the growing hunt for Anonymous members — suddenly take on a whole new level of severity.

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