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Anonymous Breaches Another US Defense Contractor

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the diminishing-expectations dept.

Security 167

JohnBert sends this excerpt from and IDG report: "The politically oriented hacking group Anonymous has released 1GB of what it says are private e-mails and documents from an executive of a U.S. defense company that sells unmanned aerial vehicles to police and the U.S. military. The documents were publicized in a post on Pastebin, with links leading to the actual material on another website. The material purportedly belongs to Richard Garcia, a senior vice president at Vanguard who was a U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation special agent for 25 years. Anonymous took special delight in the breach, as Garcia is director of InfraGard, an organization that liaises between private sector companies and the FBI. A group affiliated with Anonymous called LulzSecurity, or LulzSec, breached and defaced one of InfraGard's websites belonging to its Atlanta chapter in June."

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167 comments

Why? (2, Insightful)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167148)

One thing that I've increasingly lost track of is why people would put themselves in so much risk to attack these organizatoins. The pathos reminds me of suicide bombers, throwing their own lives away to attack a group they don't like. What anonymous doesn't have in common with those people is crippling poverty and religious conviction, that are given as the underlying cause. I don't understand the mentality involved here.

Re:Why? (4, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167156)

Ya know, George Washington wasn't really starving either...

Re:Why? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167294)

So Anonymous = Founding Fathers? Way to show the world that username "Opportunist" has a skull full of pig shit.

I've said for years that geek filth are a bunch of pampered Western wannabe rebels, and your idiot sentiment just proves it.

Moron.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167384)

Yet you still hang out and read our stuff...

Re:Why? (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167404)

So Anonymous = Founding Fathers?

If this is what you got out of that comment, you are officially too stupid to use Slashdot.

Re:Why? (0)

hierophanta (1345511) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167752)

yes, anonymous = revolutionaries = founding fathers.

your presence here is making the community worse, please leave

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168484)

What the fuck is a wannabe rebel?

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168528)

So Anonymous = Founding Fathers? Way to show the world that username "Opportunist" has a skull full of pig shit.

I've said for years that geek filth are a bunch of pampered Western wannabe rebels, and your idiot sentiment just proves it.

Moron.

Yes, a bunch of pampered Western wannabe rebels - just like the Founding Fathers.

Re:Why? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167580)

Hey, I'm a sensible regular guy.
 
..and I'm a know-it-all Slashdotian homo.

And I'm a big, black nigga.

So this is a serious privacy problem, guys. Law enforcement have said straight-up that they don't care about the constitution anymore.

Dat shit fucked up, man. Da constatushion shit freed my ansesstas.

Do you even know what the constitution says? All the founding fathers owned slaves. Even Abe Lincoln was a racist, you know.

Guys, guys...settle down.

Na, fuk dat bitch-ass nigga. I'ma snap dat little foo's neck.

Hey, DeShawn, eat any good books lately?

Guys...look - let's not be like a typical Slashdot discussion and devolve into political bickering with racist overtones of elitism. There are electronic privacy issues to discuss here...
 
...then tell Sambo here to quit chimping out.

Fuk you, mufukka!

You people can get into college for nothing. I've been on my college's waitlist for two fucking years! People like you just shuck and jive your way in, if even that. I worked my ass off for that four-point-two GPA in high school. You sat there high on pot mumbling -- see my finger-quotes -- "Bix Nood," the whole time.

Dude, you're even pissing me off, fag, and I'm white and sensible.

But you're subhuman swine on the inside. I bet the both of you've never read The Odyssey or even Kitchen Confidential.

Lookatchoo, cracka-ass muhfukka. You go read yo books, I be reproducin'.

Re-prodcucin' those phat beats of yours?

Hey-yell yeah, muthafukka. Turn up da bass! Today's lesson kiz:

Never talk down to a player...

Unless you want to be labelled straight-up, as a hater,

Savor.

Re:Why? (3, Insightful)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167684)

Yes, that's absolutely true, but washington was an aristocrat, who already had power, authority, and wealth. The founding fathers parallel doesn't work well either, beause that had some underlying similarity to a coup. There was a power structure in the colonies that was fuctionally(by way of distance) independent of the government, and thus ripe for rebellion. I honestly don't think there's ever been a non-fictional organization with the same nature as anonymous.

Re:Why? (2)

TehNoobTrumpet (1836716) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167200)

They do it because they think it's funny. For the lulz, or whatnot. I certainly see the humour in a bunch of mostly inexperienced people cracking into the data of a security firm. If legal action was taken against individuals involved, I wouldn't be able to guess if any future attacks would be happening.

Re:Why? (1)

JustNiz (692889) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167406)

I'm thinking because of their focus and achievements they can hardly be the picture you paint, kindof inexperienced skript kiddies just doing it for lolz.

It seems to me its much more likely they are actually a well-educated group at least funded by, if not set up by a competitive government or terrorist organisation.

Jingoist (1)

microbox (704317) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168056)

You know, there are some people out there who don't buy into the jingoist thing. Afterall, it is you guys that start most of the wars.

Re:Jingoist (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168864)

Afterall, it is you guys that start most of the wars.

If you mean the USA then you are sort of correct, more accurately it is the Wealthy that start most of the wars for fun and profit. The fact that they use the US military is incidental. Most Americans don't support the wars the elite start.

Re:Why? (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168066)

It's largely luck. If you have a thousand script kiddies all screwing around with half an idea of what they are doing, there is a chance that one of them will have the luck to stumble upon a weakness they can exploit. Lulzsec were rather more sophisticated than is generally the case with Anonymous though.

Re:Why? (3, Insightful)

Mr. Freeman (933986) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168564)

It has nothing to do with luck. All the script kiddies in the world won't be able to get into a server unless it hasn't been patched in 5 years or the root password is "password".
Lulzsec, anonymous, etc. are all structured the same way. There's a huge group of extremely vocal script kiddies and a very small group of people who actually know what they're doing. The script kiddies are the ones running tools like LOIC to ddos websites and making statements to the press. This serves little purpose except to distract everyone from what the real hackers are doing. These are the ones that get arrested because even the most incompetent investigator can figure out who is sending a bajillion HTTP requests to a web server.

The people who actually know what they're doing don't get caught because, well, they know what they're doing. These people take the time to research their target, identify possible methods of attack, and then plan what they're going to do. They don't just attempt to break into random servers with whatever the vulnerability of the month happens to be and then somehow stumble across a metric shitload of confidential information.

Re:Why? (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168106)

It seems to me its much more likely they are actually a well-educated group at least funded by, if not set up by a competitive government or terrorist organisation.

You're giving them more lulz!

Re:Why? (1)

TehNoobTrumpet (1836716) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168136)

This is definitely a possibility, but from interacting with supposed participants in Anonymous and such attacks, I'm more inclined to believe that these security firms are really that incompetent. Maybe a well established sense of cynicism at the U.S. government is contributing to my judgement there xD

Re:Why? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168398)

Saying Anonymous are funded by a government or organization to attack servers is like saying hippies were funded by a government or terrorists to get together and smoke pot.

Anon is a culture. It's people who stand for some principles and who are willing to defend these principles. They don't necessarily ALL share the same principles, just like all hippies did not smoke pot, but in general they have a lot in common, hence why they get together.
Anyone can opt in and out of Anon at any time. You don't need much money to start hacking. You don't need to be an expert either. You can just hang around on websites where 'members' of Anon hang around too, get to know some of them, then plot an attack together.

There is no evidence to suggest Anon works for anyone, and moreover Anon has no need to be guided by a bigger group. They don't need money, they don't need help selecting targets. I'm not saying a government can't 'infiltrate' Anon (i.e. pretend to be just another average Anon guy) and suggest a few targets, hoping others will follow, but if such a group could select the majority of Anon's targets in this fashion, then that group would necessarily compose the majority off Anon. In essence, that group would be Anon.
The USA need to realize something: every government is not out to get them. And if these attacks were organized by one of the USA's enemies, like Iran, then they would not hack for e-mails, they'd go for information on how to build weapons. The USA also need to realize that they are now a tyranny, that they are comparable to Nazi Germany, and that this is necessarily going to piss people off and make them want to resist somehow. People have always resisted oppression, and this is no different.

It's also sad that when Americans see Arabs take arms against their own government, Americans immediately call it a revolution against tyranny. But when the same thing happens in the USA, except instead of an armed conflict it's an electronic one (i.e. it is much less violent), Americans call it terrorism or vigilantism.

Re:Why? (3, Insightful)

cavreader (1903280) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168916)

"The USA also need to realize that they are now a tyranny, that they are comparable to Nazi Germany, and that this is necessarily going to piss people off and make them want to resist somehow. People have always resisted oppression, and this is no different." You are a fucking idiot. Your moral equivalency arguments denigrate and minimize the true horrors that existed during the Nazi era as well as the atrocities taking place across the world today. We have already reached the point where people honestly believe that Gaza and the West Bank mimic the conditions of Auschwitz death camps and ethnic cleansing is taking place. Ethnic cleansing is supposed to reduce the population of the target group but the Palestinians have increased their population 5 fold over the past 20 years. If ethnic cleansing is happening the perpetrators need a new washing machine. The US is called fascist and totalitarian which lets the truly totalitarian governments in the world off the hook for the atrocities they commit on a daily basis. Atrocities they do not even attempt to hide while telling anyone who complains to fuck off and mind their own business. The US has been and still is the country that the people living under true tyranny go to extremes to migrate to. Last time I checked there were no US military tanks rolling down main street threatening people with arrest and death because they want to openly state an opinion on the government. I have not seen any online bloggers or activists being arrested or prevented from publishing their opinions complain about the government.I have mot seen or heard of people being arrested in the middle of the night and made to disappear. Sadly you are not alone is creating this phenomenon of redefining history and using extreme moral equivalency, absurd conspiracy theories, and total ignorance of what the word tyranny actually means to support your short sighted and often ridicules opinions of society. The reason there is not an armed uprising in the US is because the media and people like yourself judge the entire country on the small minority of extremists on all sides of the political spectrum Any success that ANON and similar groups have achieved is not because of any technical genius on their part it is because of sloppy system admin on the sites being attacked. ANON has only exploited known vulnerabilities that have been patched for over a year. If they were really smart they would realize that hunting them down is child's play for groups like the NSA no matter how many proxies or data encryption keys they hide behind. So far they have just not been worth the effort. If the US was a tyranny these guys would already be either in jail or dead. Investigate what happens to people caught creating online vandalism or complaining about their government in countries like Iran, Syria, and N. Korea.

Re:Why? (2)

diersing (679767) | more than 2 years ago | (#37169738)

While I agree they are of the well-educated variety, what makes you think they are setup or funded by a terrorist organization or government?

Their objectives don't seem consistent with those of terrorists and if funded by a government, I would think they'd be keeping a much lower profile. They seem to me to be exactly what they advertise to be, hacktivists.

Most of their targets (with any group that hides it's identity, you'll have rogues) have an easily identifiable reason/policy that would draw the ire of reasonably-minded people (PayPay stopping Wikileaks payments, Facebook's privacy practices, and BART's shooting/cell phone blocking come to mind). I just don't see the benefit of terrorists or a foreign government making those topics their focus for covert attacks.

Re:Why? (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167234)

I suspect that most of anonymous/lulzsec score low on the religious convictions metric; but they probably score quite high on some combination of 'feeling of invulnerability/untraceability'(whether well founded or not) and 'political conviction that going down the road of myriad sinister quasi-private spooks is a bad thing'...

You don't actually have to be an impoverished nutjob clinging to the crudest flavors of some barbarous Abrahamic death-cult to take ideologically motivated risks.

Re:Why? (3, Interesting)

couchslug (175151) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167242)

That's the only way left so expect it to become "normal". Peaceful change won't happen so anyone wanting to fight must do so under less-traditional conditions using less-traditional methods.

When an opponent has overwhelming conventional forces, the only to negate that deterrence is to refuse to be deterred.

Food for thought:
This is the least expensive way to fight. The effort to PRESERVE ones troops can become a handicap.

Re:Why? (5, Interesting)

JoshuaZ (1134087) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167244)

What anonymous doesn't have in common with those people is crippling poverty and religious conviction, that are given as the underlying cause. I don't understand the mentality involved here.

Actually, many of the suicide bombers don't have crippling poverty. They are more likely to be literate and have college degrees than the general populations from which they spring. One fact that might be particularly interesting to Slashdot is that there's a disproportionate number of terrorists who are engineers. See e.g. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/12/magazine/12FOB-IdeaLab-t.html [nytimes.com] and http://spectrum.ieee.org/podcast/at-work/tech-careers/why-are-terrorists-often-engineers [ieee.org]. There's an associated idea known as the Salem Hypothesis which is the observation that in the US, anti-evolution proponents with advanced degrees are disproportionately engineers - http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Salem_Hypothesis [rationalwiki.org]). Engineers in the United States are also more politically conservative and religious than scientists. There's something weird going on here. But regardless, attributing "crippling poverty" as a major part of why people engage in suicide bombing seems to be off.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167362)

Engineers could be more likely to observe and then conclude that something is designed when in fact it isn't at all. Ie. Everything that falls within the realm of biology (well other than genetic engineering)

Yay! More engineer bashing! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167514)

And yet in 25 years involvement in an engineering career, IEEE and other professional organization activities, I can't find a creationist if my life depended on it. The whole thing on the wiki page seems based on Internet postings. SOLID SCIENCE, baby!

Re:Yay! More engineer bashing! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168356)

I have met a lot of females. Some people say that all lesbians are female but none of the females I have met are lesbians.

For all I know 100% of all suicide bombers are engineers but how would I know, suicide bombers are so far between that it is unlikely that I will ever meet one.

Re:Yay! More engineer bashing! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37169774)

I have met a lot of females...none of the females I have met are lesbians

I'm sorry, but yo' momma doesn't qualify as "a lot of females". A lot of something, maybe, but females ain't it. And you should probably get out more often.

Re:Yay! More engineer bashing! (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168912)

And yet in 25 years involvement in an engineering career, IEEE and other professional organization activities, I can't find a creationist if my life depended on it.

You're not looking hard enough. Specifically, you're not asking them in a non-confrontational way or in a non-hostile setting. Ask to join your coworkers to their churches a few times. You'll get a feel for their convictions once you experience how they worship.

Re:Why? (2)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168138)

Just throwing out a wild guess with no evidence behind it, but could it be because engineers are less able to hold simutainous contradictory beliefs? Most religious believers have to some extent an ability to ignore large parts of their holy book - they can believe that all nonbelievers are going to burn in hell while simutainously advocating religious freedom for all, as an example. They can ignore the sections of the book that command the stoning of adulterers. They can talk about the sacredness of the one-man-one-woman marriage while paying no attention to the frequent polygamous marriages of the old testament that God endorsed. Engineers are trained to think in black and white - either a fact is true, or it isn't. It can't be true while you are in the church and false as soon as you step out the doors. So when they read the bit where the holy book says to destroy those who worship at false idols, that is exactly what they do.

Re:Why? (1)

tnk1 (899206) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168460)

In fairness, it was stated pretty clearly that the events of the New Testament trump the laws of the Old Testament. So, although some Christian sects do heavily promote a distinctly Old Testament worldview, they are really pushing a number of rules and ideas that were were officially deprecated by the issuing authority in the latest edition of the standard.

I'm surprised that more people don't take the fire and brimstone people to task over that.

Re:Why? (1)

Majik Sheff (930627) | more than 2 years ago | (#37169046)

Congratulations on insulting both engineers and the average religious person.

Perhaps the reason for the disproportionate number of creationist engineers has to do with the fact that engineers spend their waking hours combating entropy. They understand better than just about anyone exactly how unlikely the spontaneous formation of life really is.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168644)

Very obvious conclusion here is that engineers think that world and human beings were engineered.

Re:Why? (1)

Gideon Wells (1412675) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168748)

Hmm, reminds me of another study I saw. It's premise was that suicide bombs tended to be middle class. The poor were too busy "living" to get serious enough about their faith to actually die for it. The middle class had the time and money to sit around and become "serious" enough in their faith to see suicidal blaze of martyrdom as a good thing.

Query: How many engineers tend to be middle class and lacking wives/kids?

Re:Why? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167302)

You don't understand that our government throws tons of money at these contractors and we don't get any results from all that money?

They're clearly showing how useless these defense contractors are at security.

It's called a check on how our tax dollars are being improperly spent on the incompetence of these security "specialists".

I hardly see this as a pathos, tunnelvision more please.

Re:Why? (1)

INT_QRK (1043164) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168530)

Either way, neither political nor personal disagreement is a moral justification for crime. Today they may disagree and target someone you also don't like, the next day they or someone else might also disagree with you. I hope the justice system finds and holds these criminals to proper account.

Re:Why? (1)

wierd_w (1375923) | more than 2 years ago | (#37169044)

I disagree. There are very important times where one should disobey the government. (Aka, break the law/comit a crime).

At the risk of a godwin, the nazi inquiries about jewish persons living in the neighborhood are a very strong example. (Note, that is all the further down that hole I want to go. I am NOT IMPLYING that any current government is nazi like, only that the historical existence of that government style sinks your argument. There *are* times when it is morally justified to comit crimes.)

Weather or not anonymous is pulling a godwin is not discernable at this time, but that is not relavent. Anon's motives are likely too disperate to properly describe anyway. All that matters here ia that they are doing this, and what the consequences will be.

Rather than asking why anon is doing these things, we should be asking why the government is reacting the way it is.

Re:Why? (2)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167326)

People in 1940's-90's Eastern Europe risked loss of work, jail time i.e. "throwing their own lives away" for telling jokes or joining a peace groups, asking questions about loved ones, handing out a pamphlet...
With Romas/COIN now Odyssey - peace group is joke on you.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167486)

Are you seriously equating the actions of these jackasses with those who were under the brutal oppression of Communism?

Next thing you know, Obama will be comparing himself to Martian Luther King...oh...wait.

Re:Why? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167660)

Is this the same idiot from up above who doesn't understand how comparison works?

One time, I walked across the street. I hear Martin Luther King also walked across the street once. OH SHIT I JUST SAID I'M EXACTLY THE SAME AS MARTIN LUTHER KING IN EVERY WAY

Re:Why? (1)

EvilStein (414640) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167348)

Low hanging fruit.

I wish they'd take out that Red Light Camera scam company called Redflex and ATS. Do something useful, lulzkids.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167412)

/b/ not your personal army

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167946)

./ get your ass back to /b/ dipshit

Re:Why? (2)

obarthelemy (160321) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167376)

Actually, they are performing a service for the community: I'd much rather have security loopholes exposed in peacetime (well, relative peace) by Anonymous et seq. than exploited by more shadowy organizations and/or governments, especially by surprise during a serious war.

Re:Why? (1)

delinear (991444) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167810)

I agree - it's interesting that all the talk is always about what they're going to do to shut down Anonymous/Lulsec and nothing about what they're going to do to beef up security so that when a genuine threat appears they can't just drive a truck through the security loopholes. I'm not saying Anon is right, but removing them from the equation alone isn't going to fix the problem.

Re:Why? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167398)

One thing that I've increasingly lost track of is why people would put themselves in so much risk to attack these organizatoins.

Yeah, it's almost like they lack all common sense.

Re:Why? (2)

drobety (2429764) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167400)

I lose track of how strapping dynamite sticks around your torso to kill people and blow up stuff is the same as anonymously (i.e. NO intention of being caught I'm sure) and giddily hacking into a web site and releasing information -- which might or might not be of public interest.

Re:Why? (1)

jeffmeden (135043) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167656)

I lose track of how strapping dynamite sticks around your torso to kill people and blow up stuff is the same as anonymously (i.e. NO intention of being caught I'm sure) and giddily hacking into a web site and releasing information -- which might or might not be of public interest.

Do you think suicide bombers have an intention of getting caught? While certainly the outcome is wildly different, that doesn't stop the mentality from being similar. Anon doesnt do anything for their own gain nor do they do anything that they intend to be "under the radar" so their entire mission (at least from the public's perspective) is to carry out visually stunning acts upon those that they have a disagreement with... In the end, they do face incredibly serious consequences (certainly not comparable to death but life-shattering nonetheless.)

Re:Why? (1)

drobety (2429764) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167956)

Do you think suicide bombers have an intention of getting caught?

Oh you! "Caught" as in "put oneself in harm's way". Hackers I am sure want to stay out of harm. Also, I see hackers who release creepy government or corporate secrets as working toward a freer society, where free flow of information is a requirement. I just can't see blowing random people and stuff as having such a higher purpose, and less so when it is done in the name of some dogmas with built-in censorship. So associating hackers with suicide bombers doesn't ring well to me. I even find the attempt at association a bit suspicious.

Re:Why? (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167980)

I'm pretty sure that putting explosives on your person with the intent of detonating them (while still on your person) indicates that they expect to die*.

Anonymous doesn't even expect to get caught, let alone die for it.

* I'm not talking about those poor kids who are being tricked/coerced into doing it. They don't do it willingly (or are entirely mislead and don't expect to die).

Re:Why? (1)

microbox (704317) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168146)

While certainly the outcome is wildly different, that doesn't stop the mentality from being similar.

You mean, not conforming to existing power structures? You would have done well in Nazi Germany. Very conformist.

Re:Why? (1)

i kan reed (749298) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167730)

The similarity is they are striking a monolithic government in an illegal way. Just because one is brutal and violent doesn't removing the underlying similarity in the tactics. Individuals without organizational support enaging in private war against a government. The mentaility is similar, not identical.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167750)

I remember reading in Super Freakonomics that actually suicide bombers tend to come from better off middle class backgrounds, are often well educated and living well above the poverty line. The theory was that the absolute poorest are too busy putting food on the table to be idealistic, while once you have enough that you are comfortable, your mind starts turning to philosophy/religion and the reasons why there is disparity in society. Sounds to me like Anonymous falls into this bracket nicely, they probably come from reasonably well off middle class background so they have a liberal-mindedness coupled with just enough technology to think they can get away with trying to redress the balance.

Re:Why? (1)

Press2ToContinue (2424598) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167894)

it's for the lulz. they do it BECAUSE it's dangerous. same as jumping out of a plane - it's dangerous, and if ur smart u can keep doing it. Erog, it's proof of elite intelligence, with bragging rights, et al. Tarzans beating their chests, 2011-style. Blame it on testosterone, and addicting adrenaline rushes.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167984)

"What anonymous doesn't have in common with those people is crippling poverty and religious conviction"

Wow, you know the religious details and the financial situation of Anonymous?
Call the Feds then.

Re:Why? (1)

Bob9113 (14996) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168218)

One thing that I've increasingly lost track of is why people would put themselves in so much risk to attack these organizatoins.

I suspect that is because you are doing it wrong. When you find some people's actions to be irrational, you can do one of two things: Form an opinion that they must be crazy, judging them by your perceptions and values, and start telling others they cannot be rational, pointing out the bits that you see as inconsistent. Or, you can operate on the assumption that for people to do something so alien to your way of thinking there must be some motive and seek to understand what that might be.

You are taking the first approach, which can only ever lead to estrangement. This practice is common. For example, it is often encouraged by nationalists regarding enemies of the state or by political parties in a two-party system seeking to reinforce the duopoly. If your objective is to remain confused and upset, or to keep others so, that is the right thing to do -- but then I somewhat wonder what you are doing here. We're not really much on ostriches here. Lots of illusions get shattered here. Which only leaves the motive of influencing others to fail to understand, which seems dickish.

If you take the latter approach, it really seems like it is not that hard to understand why these people are doing this. You haven't mentioned any of the reasons that people might do this, so it really seems like you are not trying to get it. That seems odd to me. If you are not trying to understand them, why submit a post that makes that fact so apparent? It is not very impressive -- it is far easier to not understand non-standard people than to understand them. Again the only good reason I can come up with is wanting to influence others to share your lack of understanding, rather than a genuine expression of your personal desire to understand.

crippling poverty and religious conviction, that are given as the underlying cause.

While those things are often given as the underlying cause, they are not always so. Religion, sure, sometimes. Crippling poverty is much less often the true motive (never?).

Typically (always?) when poverty is cited, the true motivation is a perception of bias in the distribution of money and/or power. Poor people very rarely incite revolution if those in power are just as poor and have no ability to change things. Really it wouldn't make much sense, would it? More often they are attacking a system in which they perceive an unhealthy concentration of wealth and/or power.

You have pointed out, probably correctly, that the members of anonymous are less likely to be focused on the money side. That can be seen somewhat in the fact that they use advanced technology that implies some degree of affluence (relative to global monetary distribution), but even more so in their choice of targets -- almost all (at least in recent months) have been about power.

So: Can you see any kind of power imbalance between the kinds of people that might be in Anonymous and a guy who is a liaison between the FBI and private sector companies that sell high-tech devices? Have you heard any stories in the past 10 years that might make some people perceive an increasing misdirection of concentrated power. or of an increase in the degree of concentration of power?

P.S.:

As I go through and edit the above, I am struck by another thought. This is well documented. The notion that people don't just do things like Anonymous is doing, given the risk of their actions, for no reason. And it is one of my all-time favorite sentences:

"Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed."

If it seems like Anonymous is doing something way out of the ordinary, that is because they are. If the goal is to use the mechanisms of society to destroy them, then keeping people confused and upset is a fine (if disingenuous) path to that end. If the goal is to understand them, it is not hard.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168778)

Not like suicide bombers at all.

A suicide bomber throws his life away - even when he succeeds. (And if he don't, he either gets shot or blows up only himself.)

Not so with anonymous. If they succeed, they take no damage. And usually not when they fail either. When they fail, they merely get no material of interest - and perhaps they loose access to the compromised third-party system from which they were attacking. Only rarely do they get caught.

They are much more like a superpower that fly over simpler people and drop a smart bomb from time to time. Sometimes they achieve what they want, sometimes they miss - but they take no damage themselves either way.

The mindset? Using advanced techniques, they can achieve what they want with very little personal risk. Not hard to understand. And even if they get caught, it probably won't be violent.

Re:Why? (1)

Xaositecte (897197) | more than 2 years ago | (#37169666)

They both share the core concept of being angry, disorganized young people (usually men) desperately searching for a purpose in life, who can be easily whipped up into a frenzy by someone charismatic. Attacking the "bad" people without regard to consequences is MUCH easier than actually building yourself up through hard work, study, etc. The actual leaders are often insulated by virtue of being better at hiding their tracks, or simply not taking a direct role in the attacks at all.

The main difference is the members of Anonymous don't believe they're going to get caught, so they don't need the level of despair it would take to convince someone to willingly commit suicide.

I was under the impression (2)

ccny_anderson (2443700) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167166)

that Anonymous as a collective whole viewed LulzSec as an inferior group, and now they're being listed as affiliates? I'm sure there are some crossovers between the group but as a whole I don't think they much care for each other...

Re:I was under the impression (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167208)

LulzSec branched OFF from Anonymous to separate their attacks from "Anonymous" as a whole.
They are but one of the many, many sub-groups of Anonymous.

Re:I was under the impression (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167264)

Yeah some people insist on believing that anon is a "group."

ORLY? (3, Funny)

Legion303 (97901) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167206)

"The politically oriented hacking group Anonymous"

Hey, guess how long it took me to realize TFA had zero credibility?

Re:ORLY? (1)

kevinNCSU (1531307) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167320)

Perhaps you should re-exam the axioms you cling to when dealing with Anonymous. The group is highly politically motivated and while you can spurt a bunch of ideological crap about legions and everybody acting separately in different directions according to their own interest, when you look at the group as a whole the actions line up pretty well in one direction and while not the only factor, political motivation seems to be an incredibly strong driving force for the selection of targets in the majority of cases.

Re:ORLY? (1)

cultiv8 (1660093) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167420)

The group is highly politically motivated and while you can spurt a bunch of ideological crap about legions and everybody acting separately in different directions according to their own interest, when you look at the group as a whole the actions line up pretty well in one direction and while not the only factor, political motivation seems to be an incredibly strong driving force for the selection of targets in the majority of cases.

That is one really long sentence that doesn't say anything at all.

Re:ORLY? (1)

Oligonicella (659917) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167614)

If that was a snark, it's a big fail. Sounds like you couldn't handle a run on sentence.

Allow me:
One can say they're a bunch of people acting as individuals.
The actions of Anonymous show a strong political motivation in the targets they select.
This makes the first sentence pedantry more than anything.

Re:ORLY? (1)

kevinNCSU (1531307) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168080)

While I agree it was poor sentence structure I think the point is put forth rather clearly in the first 6 words:

The group is highly politically motivated...

Beyond that I'm trying to dispel the claim that Anonymous has no "direction" because of it's definition as a bunch of individuals with no central control. Clearly based on the majority of the targets selected, and the reasons for those selections, one can see a trend of political motivation that can be applied to the group as a whole.

Re:ORLY? (1)

tnk1 (899206) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168752)

Anonymous is nothing more and nothing less than a mob. Just like a mob will have a general direction and general mood, so does Anonymous. In South Central after Rodney King, you'd probably be black and a resident of an impoverished area in LA and very pissed off in general about the way you were treated by the LAPD (and maybe life in general) if you were a mob member. That's not what you might call conventionally "politically motivated", but there are definitely some politics involved.

Obviously in a mob, there's people who are just yelling and marching, there are people burning cars, and of course, there's probably a few organized criminals who know how to use the cover of the mob and have actual skills and firepower to do some real damage. Since those groups are often part of the mob, but are much more effective, their actions can increase the perception that a mob has a certain motivation. Your LulzSec type groups are more skilled and effective, and by their initial association with Anonymous, they enhance the image of Anonymous as hackers and at the same time, lend some sort of pattern to Anonymous in the minds of observers, but Anonymous is still a mob and has a much looser membership than any component group.

Re:ORLY? (1)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167360)

When you don't have a central command and control structure the actions of anyone acting under your flag become the actions of the organization, so if someone hacks a political target for activism and says they are Anonymous, then Anonymous is a politically oriented hacking group.

Re:ORLY? (1)

postbigbang (761081) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167424)

Politically-oriented? WIthout a doubt, not that I disagree with their politics, rather their execution. They're using the Wikileaks formula, and using it to their advantage. They're fighting government, ranging from simple stuff like BART to embarrassing astroturfers like the USCoC. I'm guessing that they operate in a cellular-like structure that tends to isolate the group to keep it from being easily cracked. That said, at some point, even THEIR trail can be picked up. Small mistakes will eventually out them. They can out me in seconds, I'm guessing. But when they find out it's just me, they'll be disappointed. Juicier targets, however, are vulnerable.

Executive != contractor (2)

Baloroth (2370816) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167232)

It's one thing to breach the private emails and documents of an individual, even if he is an exec with a major defense contractor. Breaching an individual's computer is fairly easy, and it very much looks like that is what they did. It is totally another thing to breach the company itself. Assuming the company is somewhat competent, the exec might have a few sensitive but not classified documents. All classified material will be on company computers. Again, that looks from TFA like exactly what they got.

So no, Anonymous didn't breach another defense contractor. They breached an individual who helped run a defense contractor. The two are very, very different. Looks like the highest thing they got was a few documents marked "law enforcement sensitive." An embarrassment for the exec and somewhat his company, but not as bad as a breach of the company itself. Not to say the company couldn't be breached, of course, just that that isn't what seems to have happened.

Re:Executive != contractor (3, Informative)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167372)

That's because unless someone fucks up, you can't get at classified documents from your mom's basement. Classified data is supposed to be kept only on separate systems and networks. They don't intersect with the public Internet. You can't hack in to them as normal, regardless of what security flaws they might as, because you just can't get at them.

Remember that the reason Wikileaks got classified data was because it was provided to them by someone who had access. Manning not only had Top Secret clearance, but was a communications guy. He had authorized access to the systems, which he was then able to use to make an unauthorized copy he gave to Wikileaks. There was no super-hacker who somehow 0wned SIPRNet and JWICS, it was a guy who had access.

Re:Executive != contractor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168516)

Note that "classified" and "secret" documents are two different things. You can find lots of classified documents on systems that connect to the Internet in some way. Classified documents are sensitive but not that sensitive. You will find these documents on regular 'ol employee's computers (used to browse the Internet and such).

Secret and top secret documents are a different story.

Bigger story here? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167448)

Additionally we found evidence of a Merrill Lynch wealth management advisor giving private advance notice to Garcia about upcoming S&P US credit rating downgrades.

This could be big if S&P leaked their intention to downgrade US credit rating to other investment institutions in order to financially benefit from the news. I wonder if the mainstream press will follow up on this? Sure as hell won't expect Obama's SEC, or parent DOJ, to investigate.

Re:Bigger story here? (1)

ehiris (214677) | more than 2 years ago | (#37167700)

The news organizations should pick on that and carry out the blow as the legal system won't be able to prosecute using information that was gathered through illegal means.

Re:Bigger story here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167804)

That generally only applies when it is law enforcement doing something illegal. The judge can allow it if it was found through an illegal means and was done by someone else. At least that is my understanding.

Re:Bigger story here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168104)

The news organizations should pick on that and carry out the blow as the legal system won't be able to prosecute using information that was gathered through illegal means.

This is false, as long as the law was not broken by law enforcement. Once it's public information, it's admissible.

Re:Bigger story here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167728)

What's the news here? Big players running a giant scam called "the market" behing the scenes, on the back of everybody who's not in on it? That's just business as usual and you're not rich enough to make anybody listen.

Re:Bigger story here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167738)

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/08/18/eveningnews/main20094307.shtml

So the DoJ is already investigating S&P (likely as payback for the downgrade). I wouldn't be surprised if this is added to it.

Re:Bigger story here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167762)

You realize that S&P has been under investigation for about a year now, right?

Re:Bigger story here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167942)

I regard it as perfunctory gesture to the plebes. They'll investigate, they'll come to find some irregularities, a few unintentionally legal transgressions, and impose a minor fine which hardly counts a blip on S&P's bottom line. That's pretty much the way these investigations have gone in recent times. The recent expose of the SEC destroying evidence for over 10 years of possible Wall Street crimes indicates that the core of the US financial regulatory system is rotten and incapable of fixing itself.

Re:Bigger story here? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168000)

This was an e-mail from April 25 2011 and was based upon speculation, no real advanced knowledge:
"
Federal Reserve

        * To: "Gloria Newport"
        * Subject: Federal Reserve
        * From:
        * Date: Mon, 25 Apr 2011 14:08:54 -0700
        * User-agent: Web-Based Email 5.4.06

Hola,

This is the person who provided me with information regarding the "Economic Threat" to the Federal Reserve.

Cindy Cook, CFM
Wealth Management Advisor
Merrill Lynch Wealth Management | A Bank of America Corporation

512-397-1833
cindy_cook@ml.com

Merrill Lynch
111 Congress Ave, Suite 600
Austin, TX 78701
877-456-4643
FAX 512-879-1100

She advised that Standard and Poors, http://www.standardandpoors.com/home/en/us may lower the credit rating of the US Government which could cause a run on US Banks that will affect the Federal Reserve. They give the US Govt. 2 years to correct the current situation, which they believe both the Republican and Democratic solutions do not do enough and both parties may make this a political situation for the 2012 Presidential election and never come up with a answer to correct the situation within the two years set by Standard and Poors. She did not see any real Cyber issue that could change the situation.

Let me know if you need anything else.

Regards,

Richard T. Garcia

Senior Vice President

Vanguard Defense Industries, LLC

http://www.vanguarddefense.com

Mobile: +1 281-734-7967
Office: +1 281-298-6672 Ext-227
Fax: +1 281-298-5886

25003 Pitkin Road
Suite F-600
Spring, Texas 77386

rtgarcia@vanguarddefense.com

"

Re:Bigger story here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168038)

Additionally we found evidence of a Merrill Lynch wealth management advisor giving private advance notice to Garcia about upcoming S&P US credit rating downgrades.

This could be big if S&P leaked their intention to downgrade US credit rating to other investment institutions in order to financially benefit from the news. I wonder if the mainstream press will follow up on this? Sure as hell won't expect Obama's SEC, or parent DOJ, to investigate.

Which means we (the "little people" citizens, not the corporation citizens) are well and truly fucked.

Re:Bigger story here? (2)

kevinNCSU (1531307) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168154)

Is this actually a leak or even a big deal? I thought the S&P was threatening and warning about the downgrade for like weeks beforehand? How do we know this isn't just an adviser pointing out that the blindly obvious is going to happen?

Re:Bigger story here? (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#37168636)

It's one thing to say to the press "We're likely to do X". It's another thing entirely to say privately "We're definitely going to do X, no question about it." In the first case, everybody knows at the same time, and it's a statement of likelihood, not fact. In the second case, insiders have information that is different from the world at large that gives them an unfair advantage in the markets. By comparison, imagine what would have happened if S&P had been screaming to the press that they'd be downgrading, but telling their buddies that they weren't actually going to do it and were just blowing smoke.

Re:Bigger story here? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168418)

Advance notice? Really? Unless you actuall bought into the crap that the administration, house, and senate were spewing and the talking heads were repeating everywhere from CNN to FOX, then we all had advance notice. We have known this was coming, we knew that the "debt deal" would probably not fix it, and now we act suprised when it actually happened.... geez...advance notice....

Hah (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37167510)

It's pretty amusing that they adverts on this page are trying to get me to enlist in the defense force.

Using an .onion site... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168196)

Very smart. They should have put the .torrent file directly on the onion site though, if they put it on TPB, sockpuppet armies can mark it fake and effectively remove it.

They are no "Rosa Parks" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168280)

I suspect that all these attacks will accomplish will be to provide an excuse for politicians to further attack what we have left of our online privacy and 4th amendment rights.

Find these assholes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37168814)

And SHOOT Them.

Anonymous is a complex organism... (1)

RanceJustice (2028040) | more than 2 years ago | (#37169280)

I see many posts trying to distill Anonymous into a single paradigm that can be judged authoritatively from an outside point of view; this is in error. Anonymous, in their construction, goals, and skills, has grown into a complex multi-celled organism that, without having a predicable growth cycle or direction, acts - sometimes in what appears to be indirect opposition to itself.

  Take for instance the "Doing it for the lulz" element. There are those within who basically seek to undermine the exploits of other members (while, totally adverse to outside influences doing the same. Something of a "I can beat up on my brother, but anyone else who tries gets his ass handed to him) in indirect ways. They appear to mock the "We Are Legion" elements that undergo targeted political actions and instead co-opt some of the group's resources for more chaotic endeavors. These can range from humorous forms of trolling (ie. creating a certain avatar at Habbo Hotel and blocking the pool, announcing it is "Closed due to AIDS") to more malicious attacks on individuals, usually through the release of embarrassing personal information. Now, within this subgroup there are those that only expose those that "deserve" it, be it some member of their own community who harmed the organization, and those that take a more random approach (Hey, I found this guy's credit card, lets order a dozen pizzas!). Making it even more complex, there are many who ridicule the "newfags" who have morally directed action to seem "cool, like an oldfag" harkening back to a mostly fictitious time when their actions were entirely chaotic and based exclusively upon a narrow definition of lulzy. However, these same individuals also take part in "moral" campaigns that interest them, and apply their skills towards various ends.

That's only one tiny sub-sub-sub categorization of Anonymous, so you can see how far-reaching and complex this societal-organism has grown. Add in things like "COINTELPRO" attempts by private and occasionally documented public interests to perform damaging "agent provocateur" attacks (for instance, one of their tiers of Sony CC hacking initially tried to represent themselves as Anonymous, but were rebuked by "proper" Anonymous (and how exactly that authority is gained is an entire post in itself) and shown to be linked to groups directed by various governments to take advantage of the breech to provide a fear-climate during to crack down on the internet, when so many bills were up to provide corporate control. There are of course, rogue elements that grow from, or use the mantle of Anonymous of its own as well, but tend to fall under a system of self-policing when they overstep certain bounds - for instance, when someone tried to rally Anonymous to hack, protest, and even bomb abortion clinics, they were not only turned down, but faced the wrath of the organization themselves! . This is to say nothing going into the various tiers of loose structure within Anonymous itself and all the tasks, skills, ideologies, and command structures working in parallel, often invisible to one-another save in certain occasions - going into that would make this long post even longer, but definitely warrants a level of respect.

Overall, "proper" Anonymous has likely done more good than ill in its years of operation. Besides being nearly totally responsible for exposing Scientology as a corrupt and dangerous cult and changing their perception in the media from "That weird thing celebrities do" to "Oh, that's the crazy H-Bomb volcano alien thing that costs millions of dollars to level up and makes you cut off ties to your family" (and the subsequent loss of CoS tax exempt status in many jurisdictions - Texas and Germany come to mind in specific), they've provided tons of evidence of the corruption of Western (and especially American) governments who act as nothing more than puppets for corporate interests. Take for instance the Bank of America leaks, plus the HBGary Federal exposure, and the work of many who unveiled acts of corruption or attacks on Internet freedom as a whole. Anonymous is present even in relation to more public leak exposures, like Wikileaks, especially in the months and years in the past; it has certainly become more direct as the quagmire of issues around trustworthy exposures made it more realistic to simply expose oneself.

There is much more I could say, but to keep this post from being even more meandering in attempting to properly cover a hint of the breath of Anonymous, I'll simply say that since its inception, the Internet would not be the same without its Final Boss.

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