Anonymous Hacks the FBI
Anonymous, the international hacking group responsible for several recent large-scale hackings has moved up in terms of whom they target. Most recently, the dangerous group targeted the Federal Bureau of Investigation. While it is still unknown how they did it, it has been confirmed that Anonymous was able to eavesdrop on a conversation between the FBI, Scotland Yard, and several other of the world’s police agencies. In a sense of irony, the phone conversation was regarding how the agencies would proceed in handling the group.
Anonymous posted their 16-minute recording of the conference call online on Friday. They then released a comment on Twitter about the incident: “The FBI might be curious how we’re able to continuously read their internal comms for some time now.”
An F.B.I. official claimed that Anonymous had not hacked in to the FBI at any point. According to the official, the group had actually obtained an email which contained all of the corresponding information about the phone call, including the date, time, and the access code to listen in on it. The email was sent on January 13th to over 30 people in the FBI, Scotland Yard, and several other police agencies from other nations. One of the recipients forwarded the email to another private account, and it was at that time that Anonymous intercepted the email, according to another official.
“It’s not really that sophisticated,” said the official, who would only discuss the incident so long as his name is left out of any reports. He said that none of the networks for the FBI had been hacked in any way, but also added that communications security is more difficult when it comes to correspondence between countries.
“We’re always looking at ways to make our communications more secure, and obviously we’ll be taking a look at what happened here,” he said.
In response to the break in the story, the FBI released the following statement: “The information was intended for law enforcement officers only and was illegally obtained. A criminal investigation is under way to identify and hold accountable those responsible.”
This breech is the latest declaration in what appears to be an on-going war between hacker groups like Anonymous and their “enemies” in the federal and corporate world. How these events will affect public opinion and safety remains to be seen, but it can be assured that a resolution is not yet in sight.
The F.B.I. e-mail titled “Anon-Lulz International Coordination Call” — a reference to Anonymous and to an allied group of hackers, Lulz Security — announced a conference call for investigators “to discuss the on-going investigations related to Anonymous, Lulzsec, Antisec, and other associated splinter groups.”
The recording posted on YouTube and elsewhere on the Web included American and British voices discussing suspects in the case. The call begins with banter between an American named Bruce and British officials named Stewart or Stuart and Matt, who are joined by another official from F.B.I. headquarters, Timothy F. Lauster Jr., who sent the e-mail announcing the conference call.