A blizzard of hacks and leaks hit the internet today, with the hacktivist group Anonymous
claiming responsibility for most, but not all, of the damage. The press channel for Anonymous has announced that it has begun its hacking spree for November 5th, in commemoration of Guy Fawkes Day. Numerous claims of hacked sites, some affiliated with Anonymous, and some not, include PayPal, Symantec, VMware, as well as defacement of NBC-affiliated sites and Lady Gaga’s fan page.
Although PayPal has stated there’s no evidence that they were hacked, AnonymousPress posted a tweet with a file link containing five pages of PayPal user data, including names, email addresses, encrypted passwords and phone numbers. The file has since been removed. The credit for Symantec goes to @Doxbin, and they have stated that “HTP is not affiliated with Anonymous.” Anonymous is also allegedly responsible for leaking VMWare ESX Server Kernel source code. Other affected websites include ImageShack, in which claims of a zero-day vulnerability were used, numerous Australian sites, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
The theme for today seems to be another anti-surveillance protest, targeting surveillance systems, such as Trapwire and INDECT. According to SiliconANGLE contributing editor, John Casaretto, “They feel that there’s a number of human rights violations being executed here. Surveillance systems in their perception are direct threats to privacy and civil freedoms.”
However, not all of these hacks have been made by Anonymous. A lone hacker going by the name Pyknic defaced the Lady Gaga fan page and affected several NBC-affiliated sites, among them: its homepage, its video homepage, and the site for Saturday Night Live.
In a related discussion of last week’s threats made by Annonymous against Zynga over their layoffs and treatment of employees, Anonymous has threatened to take down Facebook today if Zynga doesn’t change its plans to lay off more employees and outsource work to India. Casaretto believes that “an attack on Zynga itself is not out of the question.”
Additionally, the press arm for Anonymous has announced that it is rallying the public for an in-person V For Vendetta protest at The Houses of Parliament, at 8PM in London. See the whole segment with Kristin Feledy and John Casaretto on the Morning NewsDesk show.