'Anonymous' hackers planning 'real-world attacks'

Feb 17, 2011
The screensaver of whistleblower website Wikileaks. A computer security firm working to expose members of hacker group "Anonymous" pulled out of a premier industry conference here due to threats of real-world attacks on its employees.

A computer security firm working to expose members of hacker group "Anonymous" pulled out of a premier industry conference here due to threats of real-world attacks on its employees.

HBGary personnel have been peppered with threatening messages since Anonymous hackers looted data from its computer systems earlier this month, according to a message on the California firm's website Wednesday.

"In addition to the data theft, HBGary individuals have received numerous threats of violence, including threats at our tradeshow booth," the company said.

"In an effort to protect our employees, customers and the RSA Conference community, HBGary has decided to remove our booth and cancel all talks."

specialists and national security officials are in San Francisco this week to share insights on topics ranging from guarding "smart" power grids to blocking attacks on smartphones and computer tablets.

Anonymous, the hacker group behind online attacks on companies that withdrew services to , busted through HBGary Federal computer defenses early this month because the firm was working with federal agents to expose their identities.

Anonymous took credit for breaking into the website of HBGary Federal, stealing tens of thousands of email messages and temporarily routing traffic to a page with a vitriolic message.

The HBGary hack was more sophisticated than the distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks last year on the Amazon, Visa and MasterCard websites in apparent retaliation for their decisions to stop working with WikiLeaks.

WikiLeaks has triggered political ire in Washington for its publication of a trove of classified US diplomatic cables, as well as military reports from Iraq and Afghanistan.

In a typical , a large number of computers are commanded to simultaneously visit a website, overwhelming its servers, slowing service or knocking it offline completely.

Last month, British police arrested five people and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation launched raids across the United States as part of a probe into cyberattacks by Anonymous.

Explore further: Study: Social media users shy away from opinions

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Wikileaks defenders hack computer security firm

Feb 07, 2011

A hacker group behind online attacks on companies that withdrew services to WikiLeaks busted through the defenses of a computer security firm working with federal agents to expose their identities.

British arrests over cyber group 'Anonymous'

Jan 27, 2011

British police arrested five people Thursday as part of an investigation into cyber attacks by the online group "Anonymous", which last year assailed websites that were hostile to WikiLeaks.

Hackers train sights on Yemen after Egypt

Feb 03, 2011

The loose-knit group of online global hackers known as "Anonymous" has trained its sights on Yemen following cyber attacks on government websites in Tunisia and Egypt.

WikiLeaks under new cyber attack: Twitter feed

Nov 30, 2010

WikiLeaks said in a Twitter message on Tuesday that it was under a new cyber attack after a similar incident at the weekend just before the website began releasing secret US diplomatic cables.

Recommended for you

Study: Social media users shy away from opinions

Aug 26, 2014

People on Facebook and Twitter say they are less likely to share their opinions on hot-button issues, even when they are offline, according to a surprising new survey by the Pew Research Center.

US warns shops to watch for customer data hacking

Aug 23, 2014

The US Department of Homeland Security on Friday warned businesses to watch for hackers targeting customer data with malicious computer code like that used against retail giant Target.

Fitbit to Schumer: We don't sell personal data

Aug 22, 2014

The maker of a popular line of wearable fitness-tracking devices says it has never sold personal data to advertisers, contrary to concerns raised by U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer.

Should you be worried about paid editors on Wikipedia?

Aug 22, 2014

Whether you trust it or ignore it, Wikipedia is one of the most popular websites in the world and accessed by millions of people every day. So would you trust it any more (or even less) if you knew people ...

Philippines makes arrests in online extortion ring

Aug 22, 2014

Philippine police have arrested eight suspected members of an online syndicate accused of blackmailing more than 1,000 Hong Kong and Singapore residents after luring them into exposing themselves in front of webcam, an official ...

User comments : 2

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

frajo
5 / 5 (1) Feb 17, 2011
The actual reason for HBGary's retreat is their absolutely embarrassing and unprofessional behavior while trying to uncover "Anonymous".

Read the whole funny story on ArsTechnica:
arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2011/02/
anonymous-speaks-the-inside-story-of-the
-hbgary-hack.ars
draa
5 / 5 (1) Feb 17, 2011
I've been following this and haven't heard of any "real world" attacks. HBGary pulled out because they got pwned. By the way, can you call yourselves Security experts after this. I think not.