Hacker thieves targeted Anonymous allies: Symantec

Mar 05, 2012
A masked hacker, part of the Anonymous group, is pictured in Lyon, France, in January 2012. Anonymous on Monday gave mixed reactions to a US computer security firm's report that backers of the notorious hacker group were suckered into downloading software that steals online banking information.

Anonymous on Monday gave mixed reactions to a US computer security firm's report that backers of the notorious hacker group were suckered into downloading software that steals online banking information.

A message at a Twitter account for YourAnonNews blasted Symantec's findings as "wrong and libelous" while "" from other accounts claiming to be voices from the loosely knit group alerted people to the danger.

Symantec, which is among the long list of victims of Anonymous attacks, reported that someone replaced a software tool available for download by Anonymous allies with code that also steals bank account data.

The Anonymous ally software is a small program that lets computers join an army of machines that hit websites with simultaneous requests for information or service in what are referred to as distributed-denial-of-service attacks (DDoS).

A pastebin.com link that Anonymous supporters were referred to for the DDoS tool was replaced with a link to a deceptively similar Zeus virus that also steals online banking password and account information, according to Symantec.

"The Zeus client does perform DoS attacks, but it doesn't stop there," Symantec said in a blog post. "It also steals the users' online banking credentials, webmail credentials, and cookies."

"Not only will supporters be breaking the law by participating in (denial-of-service) attacks on Anonymous hacktivism targets, but may also be at risk of having their online banking and email credentials stolen," Symantec added.

The Anonymous tool was replaced with the duplicitous download on January 20, the day US authorities shut down file-sharing website in a move condemned by the , according to Symantec.

Explore further: Meerkat vs. Periscope: Live-streaming app battle & buzz

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.

Anonymous, loose-knit group of 'hacktivists'

Jan 20, 2012

Anonymous, which briefly knocked the FBI and Justice Department websites offline in retaliation for the US shutdown of file-sharing site Megaupload, is a shadowy group of international hackers with no central ...

DOS Extortion Fading

May 01, 2007

The economics of Denial Of Service blackmailing isn't working out, and botnet owners are shifting to other, less risky crimes.

Hacker group claims hit on US defense contractor

Jul 12, 2011

Hacker group Anonymous released a trove of military email addresses and passwords it claimed to have plundered from the network of US defense consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton.

Recommended for you

Meerkat vs. Periscope: Live-streaming app battle & buzz

Mar 27, 2015

Download Periscope, Twitter's just-launched live video-streaming app, and you'll find people broadcasting all sorts of mundane stuff: waiting for AT&T to fix their wiring, getting out of bed in Silicon V ...

Twitter chief vows to help Indonesia fight disasters

Mar 26, 2015

Twitter chief Dick Costolo said Thursday the microblogging site planned to work with Indonesian authorities to warn people about natural disasters that regularly hit the archipelago, from earthquakes to volcanic ...

EU unveils ambitious overhaul of digital economy

Mar 25, 2015

The EU unveiled an ambitious plan to overhaul Europe's fragmented digital landscape on Wednesday that would allow Europeans traveling in other bloc countries to get their Netflix film fix or watch BBC iPlayer ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.