Anonymous Hackers Claim Retaliatory Attack On Spain Police

June 12, 2011

One member said the group’s “command and control” centers are invite-only, adding: “It’s to protect people, but if you have proven trustworthy you get invited – it’s not hard to do. It’s not some elitist structure but a way to keep the press and the odd bit of law enforcement seeing who issues commands.”


“Our project has no leader structure, only different roles. The degree of leadership and organization in the various projects various a lot,” one long-term insider explained. “It’s all very chaotic, but we communicate and co-operate with each other. I see us as different cells of the same organism.”

MADRID (Dow Jones)–A group of hackers tied to a series of security breaches on websites across the world said Sunday it attacked the Spanish police’s main website in retaliation for the recent arrest of three alleged members of the group.
In a statement sent to local media and posted on several websites, alleged representatives of the “Anonymous” group said they plan to keep the fight against Spain’s “corrupt” state.
They also rejected police claims that the three who were detained across Spain are in any way leaders of the movement, saying “Anonymous” has no leadership. Police released the three after being charged Friday.
“Our minds, ideas and words are our weapons. Police has no other obligation than protecting the people,” the statement written in Spanish said. “And the people can’t be protected from itself.”
The statement added that “Anonymous” attacked the police website at 2230 GMT, in a denial-of-service attempt to put the website offline. That attack came after police said it has no evidence that the detained were tied to a high-profile theft of Sony customers’ data earlier this year, but added the three tried to steal and publish what it called “sensitive data” about Spanish politicians and policemen.
Police also said the trio was looking to release the data on Web pages set up by sympathizers of ETA, the terrorist group that has been seeking Basque independence and suspected to have killed over 800 people over the last four decades. Earlier claims said that the three who were detained had helped to coordinate massive attacks on international websites.
In response, Anonymous said Sunday that it seeks to defend freedom of expression and transparency, from a pacifist standpoint. “We are not terrorists. We are citizens fighting for rights that have been coerced,” the statement said.
The detentions have caused a controversy in Spain, where many messages in support of the hackers have been posted in social networks and chat rooms. Many of these supporters criticized the police’s description of the detainees, mocking the idea that they are in any way leading Anonymous’ activities. The most prominent of these expressions of support came from Real Democracy Now, a loosely organized group that has been coordinating protests against political corruption and economic austerity measures.
In a statement on its website, the group said it is “outraged by media manipulation and the actions of security forces” regarding the Anonymous detentions, and asked for charges to be dropped against the three who were arrested.


Anonymous Hackers

June 11, 2011

Anonymous has carried out web attacks to help Wikileaks. The group [ANONYMOUS], which made headlines in December 2010 after it used software freely available over the internet to temporarily bring down the sites of MasterCard and Visa, said that its members were not credit card thieves.
they are still out there Anonymous

Anonymous Hackers Claim Retaliatory Attack On Spanish Police Website

A flag conveying symbolism associated with Anonymous. The symbolism of the “suit without a head” represents leaderless organization and anonymity.

Wikileaks webpage, AFPIndividuals appearing in public as Anonymous, wearing the Guy Fawkes masks popularized by the comic book and film V for Vendetta, Los Angeles, February 2008 via en.wikipedia.org

Online vigilante group Anonymous has denied being behind an attack that led to the theft of personal data from around 77 million PlayStation users. “Whoever broke into Sony’s servers to steal the credit card info and left a document blaming Anonymous clearly wanted Anonymous to be blamed for the most significant digital theft in history,” the statement read.

PlayStation logo inside the Sony store in New York City

More than a million users have been affected by the security breach

Three suspected members of the Anonymous hacking group have been arrested in Spain.

The trio are said to have been involved in co-ordinating the group’s activity in that country.

The arrests were made simultaneously in three Spanish cities – Barcelona, Valencia and Almeria.

Anonymous has claimed responsibility for attacks on Sony, Spanish banks and co-ordinated action in defence of whistle-blowing site Wikileaks.

A statement from the Spanish national police force said that a computer seized in the home of one person it arrested was used in the hacks.

The arrests were the culmination of an investigation that began in October 2010.

It involved Spanish cyber police combing through millions of lines of chat logs to identify who was behind the group’s activities.

Some of the attacks made by Anonymous members used a web-based tool called Loic to bombard target sites with data. The websites of PayPal, Mastercard and Amazon were all targeted using this tool.

It seems that Loic did a poor job of hiding the identity of the people using it. It is believed that some police forces have already moved against the group based on this information.

Arrests have been made in the US, UK and Holland of Anonymous members, prior to the raids in Spain.

Anonymous grew out of the online picture sharing site 4Chan and describes itself as a group of concerned internet citizens.

As well as attacking sites that it perceives as not supporting Wikileaks. The loosely organised collective has also attacked government sites in Tunisia and Egypt to aid popular protest movements.

Viacom logo

Anonymous has issued a warning to Viacom

After publishing its statement regarding Sony, Anonymous also issued a warning to entertainment giant Viacom.
The group said that because of Viacom, “thousands of people have undergone the unfortunate experience of receiving falsely-claimed copyright infringements”.
Viacom is known for taking aggressive legal action to get its content removed from video sharing websites.
In 2007, the company attempted to sue YouTube for $1bn (£608m).
As part of its counter-action, YouTube’s parent company Google accused Viacom of uploading some videos itself and manipulating them to look like amateur copies.
The case against YouTube was eventually thrown out.
In its statement, Anonymous wrote: “Anonymous demands from Viacom a public press release to admit and apologise for the fraud and crimes that they have committed.
“Anonymous also demands that Viacom allows everyone throughout the internet full rights to be able to express themselves.
“Lastly, we, the citizens of the world, demand that Viacom stops their attempts to gather personally identifying information such as IPs, which are of no relevance to them.”

via bbc.co.uk

I doubt Viacom did this… it was merely Youtube’s hypothetical to convince the judge of Viacom’s own possibly suspicion because the argument became a matter of possibility. claiming the hypothetical as a truth is merely a tool. yes it is a lie, but that is the way the law works.  sometimes it is merely to get a judge’s attention as to the concept.

…I guess they got Anonymous, but there are obviously a lot of potential suspects out there that could of framed Anonymous. hackers like to set each other up. They are also very aware of things. They are often already in positions of power.

The personal details of thousands of people have been stolen after hackers targeted British games developer Codemasters.
The firm described the data theft as “significant” saying names, addresses, phone numbers and dates of birth were all taken on 3 June.
However, it said that payment details were not compromised.
The latest security breach comes in the midst of a spate of hacker attacks, including several against Sony.
Codemasters said it took the compromised website offline as “as soon as the intrusion was detected”. via bbc.co.uk

Anonymous (used as a mass noun) is an Internet meme that originated in 2003 on the imageboard 4chan, representing the concept of many online community users simultaneously existing as an anarchic, digitized global brain.[2] It is also generally considered to be a blanket term for members of certain Internet subcultures, a way to refer to the actions of people in an environment where their actual identities are not known.[3]
In its early form, the concept has been adopted by a decentralized on-line community acting anonymously in a coordinated manner, usually toward a loosely self-agreed goal, and primarily focused on entertainment. Beginning with 2008, the Anonymous collective has become increasingly associated with collaborative, international hacktivism, undertaking protests and other actions, often with the goal of promoting internet freedom and freedom of speech. Actions credited to “Anonymous” are undertaken by unidentified individuals who apply the Anonymous label to themselves as attribution.[4]
Although not necessarily tied to a single on-line entity, many websites are strongly associated with Anonymous. This includes notable imageboards such as 4chan, Futaba, their associated wikis, Encyclopædia Dramatica, and a number of forums.[5] After a series of controversial, widely-publicized protests and distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks by Anonymous in 2008, incidents linked to its cadre members have increased.[6] In consideration of its capabilities, Anonymous has been posited by CNN to be one of the three major successors to WikiLeaks.[7]

Anonymous’ organization

Anonymous isn’t truly an organization; not in any traditional sense. They are a large, decentralized group of individuals who share common interests and web haunts. There are no official members, guidelines, leaders, representatives or unifying principles. Rather, Anonymous is a word that identifies the millions of people, groups, and individuals on and off of the internet who, without disclosing their identities, express diverse opinions on many topics.

Being “Anonymous” is much more a quality or a self-definition than a membership. Each project under the Anonymous banner may have a whole different set of instigators. Leadership, when it exists, is informal and carried out in chat channels, forums, IM and public calls to action online. No one’s meeting in a board room.

The name Anonymous itself is inspired by the perceived anonymity under which users post images and comments on the Internet. Usage of the term Anonymous in the sense of a shared identity began on imageboards.


Origin of Anonymous

They are loosely affiliated with 4chan and other smaller “chan” boards (like 7chan, 2chan and 711chan) due to these sites’ anonymous posting feature, which allows them to plan attacks without revealing any identifying information.
A tag of Anonymous is assigned to visitors who leave comments without identifying the originator of the posted content. Users of imageboards sometimes jokingly acted as if Anonymous were a real person. As the popularity of imageboards increased, the idea of Anonymous as a collective of unnamed individuals became an internet meme.
They coordinate raids on forums like 4chan.org and ICQ chat rooms, among other venues. 4chan.org is a major hub, but I wouldn’t call it Anonymous’ home. Anonops.net was as close to an HQ as they had, but it has been shut down.
Some claim Anonymous to be the first internet-based superconsciousness. Anonymous is a group, in the sense that a flock of birds is a group. How do you know they’re a group? Because they’re travelling in the same direction. At any given moment, more birds could join, leave, peel off in another direction entirely.
Anonymous doesn’t like to be called a ‘group’. And much less do its members like to be called ‘hackers’. They are, to use the manifesto’s excitable, sci-fi-tinged terminology, an “Online Living Consciousness”

Anonymous hierarchy

They have been described as a leaderless, anarchic group of “hacktivists” but inside Anonymous, some have found that the organization is more hierarchical – with a hidden cabal of around a dozen highly skilled hackers coordinating attacks across the web.

One member said the group’s “command and control” centers are invite-only, adding: “It’s to protect people, but if you have proven trustworthy you get invited – it’s not hard to do. It’s not some elitist structure but a way to keep the press and the odd bit of law enforcement seeing who issues commands.”

“Our project has no leader structure, only different roles. The degree of leadership and organization in the various projects various a lot,” one long-term insider explained. “It’s all very chaotic, but we communicate and co-operate with each other. I see us as different cells of the same organism.”


The leaders of the group use internet relay chat (IRC) technology, which can allow groups of people to communicate clandestinely. Some in the upper echelons are understood to have control over “botnets” comprising more than 1,000 Windows PCs that have been infected with a virus and can be controlled without the user’s knowledge to direct “distributed denial of service” (DDoS) attacks against target organizations.

Copyright Tail Trying to Wag Internet Dog

April 16, 2011

A possible landmark copyright case is now before the 2d Circuit, Viacom et al. v. YouTube. On behalf of 44 co-signatory law professors, Annemarie Bridy and I wrote an amicus brief urging the court to affirm the lower court’s decision that YouTube is immune from copyright claims unless it has item-specific and location-specific information about infringing postings. The brief — which I think turned out quite well, and is, at the very least, a good example of decent legal prose — is available here. Briefs submitted by other amici (and there are lots of them) are available here.

I’ve reprinted below some of my comments from earlier postings about the case. I could be falling prey to a common syndrome: when you work as an advocate for one side in a case for a while, you begin to believe that you have truth and justice firmly on your side, that the opposing position is outrageous and contrary to all common sense and moral principle . . . . But I really do think this one matters, for the future of the Net.
It was a bit more of an adventure submitting this brief than it should have been — the 2d Circuit does not treat its “amici” in a very friendly fashion. Not only must you be admitted to the 2d Circuit bar to submit an amicus brief — no temporary admissions pro haec vice are permitted — but you also have to be sure to be hooked up to the latest version of the court’s electronic filing system; not huge problem, i suppose if you’re a lawyer or law firm practicing frequently in front of the 2d Circuit, but not something that a law professor, even if admitted to the court’s bar, is likely to be current with. And even if the parties themselves require electronic filing, the court does not — so in addition to getting all the aforementioned ducks in a row, you have to comply with the court’s rather arcane printing rules and deliver 6 hard copies to them. Seems all a bit overly formalized, and a means to discourage, rather than encourage, participation — I mean, they don’t have to even read the briefs that are submitted, so why make it so hard for people to submit them?
And one little humorous side note. As noted here, YouTube has changed its “repeat infringer” policy. The Copyright Act requires, as a pre-condition to asserting the immunity from infringement claims provided in section 512, that a service provider

“has adopted and reasonably implemented, and informs subscribers and account holders of the service provider’s system or network of, a policy that provides for the termination in appropriate circumstances of subscribers and account holders of the service provider’s system or network who are repeat infringers; and

YouTube has had such a policy for a while — more or less a “3 strikes and you’re out” kind of thing. [Indeed, one of the truly outrageous things I learned while working on this brief is that Viacom itself was actually thrown off of YouTube as a “repeat infringer” because its marketing department had posted thousands of files for promotional purposes, and its legal department issued hundreds of “takedown notices” with respect to many of them]. But now they’ll let you come back onto the system if you go to “copyright school” — watch a video and take a copyright exam [The video is pretty good — good enough that I couldn’t tell whether it was YouTube’s copyright school or a parody of same . . .]
[thanks to Ben Mishkin and Steven Kim for pointers]
***********
from earlier postings

YouTube successfully defended itself against infringement claims brought by a host of content providers by asserting the “safe harbor” provisions of sec. 512(c) of the Copyright Act, and the case concerns the interpretation of that provision. The section 512 safe harbors have been of prodigious importance — by giving providers of online applications and services a defense to infringement claims arising out of their users’ activities (e.g., user postings of infringing files on YouTube), it has enabled the (astonishing) growth of “user-generated content” or “Web 2.0″ sites over the past decade — YouTube, Facebook, Craigslist, Tumblr, Twitter, Myspace, Blogger, and on and on and on. At the absurdly high volume at which these sites operate — 250,000 words a minute posted on Blogger, 40 hours of video a minute on YouTube, etc. — the liability risk without a safe harbor of some kind is truly astronomical, running into the billions of dollars a day. So you don’t get a YouTube, or a Facebook, or a Blogger, etc. without something like sec. 512; it’s no accident, as I’ve pointed out before, that all of the largest Web 2.0 sites on the global net are based here in the US. And, among other things, if you don’t have a YouTube, or a Facebook, or a Twitter, Hosni Mubarak is still the President of Egypt.
So there’s a lot at stake in how the 2d Circuit — widely regarded, along with the 9th Circuit, as the source of the most important copyright doctrine — interprets the statute. Precedent up to now (mostly in the 9th Circuit) has (correctly) given service providers very broad protection under the statutory immunity; to make a very long story short, the service providers (like YouTube) have no duty to find infringing material that may be present on their site, or to do anything about infringing material on their site, unless and until the existence of the infringement(s) is brought to their attention by the copyright holder. Once they receive such a notification from the copyright holder (through a detailed set of procedures laid out in the statute), they have to act — removing or disabling access to the offending material (and informing the user that they’ve done so). But without receiving the notice of infringement, they’re under no duty to act, and they’re within the safe harbor if the copyright holder subsequently asserts a claim against them.
The content providers don’t like it, needless to say. They’d like YouTube to, say, take down everything uploaded to the site that is labelled “The Daily Show,” for instance, or “Lionel Messi’s Fabulous Goal vs Arsenal,” on the grounds that they should know of the infringing nature of the postings, without having to be specifically informed of that by the copyright holder. If you want to know why that’s both wrong (as a matter of statutory construction) and absurd (as a matter of public policy), read the brief. [It’s pretty short — 18 pages or so of text — and the prose, of course, is crystalline).
If the 2d Circuit endorses the 9th Circuit position — and I fervently hope that it does — that battle, at least, is probably over; there’s not much copyright doctrine out there where the 2d and 9th Circuits are in agreement but some other circuit (or the Supreme Court, for that matter) takes an opposing view.