Anonymous Hits Interpol
The hacker group Anonymous continues to make mainstream headlines around the world. It seems that just as we are recuperating from one high profile attack, Anonymous shockingly hacks another powerful site. This time, they were able to hack into the Web site for the International Police, or Interpol. The whole site went down on Tuesday just hours after Interpol announced on their site that they were able to arrest 25 members of Anonymous in various countries like Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Spain.
According to the official Interpol statement, the respective authorities in Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Spain were able to make 25 arrests and seize 250 items of IT equipment and mobile phones after a brief investigation. The suspects in custody range between the ages of 17 and 40.
An Interpol statement said that two of the servers used by the group in Bulgaria and the Czech Republic had been blocked. There is a lot of highly valuable information on those servers, including the information of the manager of Anonymous’ computer operations in Spain and Latin America. In the hacking world, this man is only identified by the initials oh his hacker aliases, “Thunder” and “Pacotron.”
The arrests in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, and Spain are not the only ones. Several other police authorities and officers located in Europe, North America and elsewhere have made dozens of arrests. As a result of these arrests and recent legislation concerning online piracy and privacy, Anonymous has set their attack sites higher and higher; rather than attacking the sites of large businesses and corporations, Anonymous had changed their focus to attacking government sites and military and intelligence-linked targets. Within the last several weeks, they were able to take down the CIA official website and hack in to a private conference call between the FBI, Scotland Yard, and many other national police agencies. Anonymous was then able to release a 16 minute recording of the call on to the internet.
It was the Spanish police who were able to get concrete evidence and transfer the information to other departments to make arrests in the other locations. They accomplished this by tracing the IP addresses from various server logs. This tracing is what led to finding 10 suspects in Argentina, six in Chile and five in Colombia. It is believed that these suspects are directly related to the defacement of government websites and the public release of otherwise confidential information, including the personal information of a few unnamed top officials.
The group of suspects had set up a chat room to assist in the implementation of the computer attacks in Spain and Latin America. After the arrests, messages went out to several other Anonymous members to attack the website for the Spanish police. The call asked for the attacks to come from members located outside of Spain “so that the police would not have enough data to lead to new arrests”, according to the statement.
Anonymous has become increasing politicized over the last year, particularly over issues of online rights and the international controversy over whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks.