Anonymous Documentary We Are Legion Peels Back Hacktivist Group’s History

By Angela Water | January 22, 2012 | 11:33 am

PARK CITY, Utah — New documentary We Are Legion puts an actual human face on Anonymous, the hacktivist group whose members usually are seen wearing Guy Fawkes masks — if they are seen at all.

Considering Anonymous’ retaliatory acts against websites run by the Department of Justice and the entertainment industry just last week in response to the government takedown of file-sharing site Megaupload, We Are Legion: The Story of the Hacktivists could almost be mistaken for a 93-minute news segment.
But unlike most news segments about the group, the documentary contains genuine moments with actual Anons (some maintain their anonymity in the doc, but others don’t).

“The last two or three days we’ve seen a lot of what Anonymous does,” We Are Legion director Brian Knappenberger said in an interview with Wired.com here Saturday, the morning after the documentary’s premiere at the Slamdance Film Festival. “You know, there was a film about the Weather Underground that came out a few years ago, and that was made 30 years after they were blowing up buildings, and I love that film. But picture making a film like that while they were still blowing up buildings — that’s what I’m talking about.”

We Are Legion might be the first to portray the group’s members as true revolutionaries, and it could serve as a time capsule if the kind of online sit-ins and retaliatory strikes that Anonymous has helped create become the new model for civil disobedience across the globe.

For those who didn’t hear of Anonymous until Occupy Wall Street started up, We Are Legion effectively puts the group’s current incarnation in historical perspective. The documentary traces the roots of early hacker-activist groups like the Cult of the Dead Cow and Electronic Disturbance Theater before jumping into Anonymous’ roots in 4chan.

The documentary goes deep. Speaking with current and former Anonymous participants — as well as Wired writers Ryan Singel and Steven Levy — Knappenberger gives a thorough chronological account of Anonymous’ exploits, up to the group’s current place at the forefront of online disobedience.

Starting with Mercedes Renee Haefer, who was arrested in conjunction with the denial-of-service attacks against online payment service PayPal last July, the documentary talks to Anons and experts about Anonymous’ vendetta against Scientology, defense of WikiLeaks, and support of the actions in Tunisia and Egypt during the Arab Spring.

Slamdance, the underground alternative movie fest that runs during the Sundance Film Festival here each year, seems like the perfect place for We Are Legion‘s primer on Anonymous. The film might have seemed out of place at a glitzy Hollywood-in-the-hills screening.

“It feels right,” Knappenberger said of the premiere. “Slamdance has a kind of undercurrent of revolutionary, counterculture, slightly anarchic vibe that just seemed to fit [the film] right away.”

Knappenberger is looking for distribution for his film so it can be seen by a wider audience. It seems possible that Hollywood backers will shy away from a film about Anonymous after the group’s actions against the Motion Picture Association of America and other entertainment industry power players. But Knappenberger said he isn’t worried.

“I just want to tell the story,” he said, adding that considering Anonymous’ various targets over the years, “Who aren’t I offending?”

He could also take advice from his subject Haefer, who in the film says that what Anonymous ultimately hopes to protect is freedom of speech, regardless of a person’s opinions or background.

Or, as she says simply, “Your opinion matters.”

Anonymous Documentary We Are Legion Peels Back Hacktivist Group's History | Underwire | Wired.com.

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Anonymous downs government, music industry sites in largest attack ever

Published: 20 January, 2012, 01:48
Edited: 20 January, 2012, 08:44

Hacktivists with the collective Anonymous are waging an attack on the website for the White House after successfully breaking the sites for the FBI, Department of Justice, Universal Music Group, RIAA and Motion Picture Association of America.

In response to today’s federal raid on the file sharing service Megaupload, hackers with the online collective Anonymous have broken the websites for the FBI, Department of Justice, Universal Music Group, RIAA, Motion Picture Association of America and Warner Music Group.

“It was in retaliation for Megaupload, as was the concurrent attack on Justice.org,” Anonymous operative Barrett Brown tells RT on Thursday afternoon.

Only hours before the DoJ and Universal sites went down, news broke that Megaupload, a massive file sharing site with a reported 50 million daily users, was taken down by federal agents. Four people linked to Megaupload were arrested in New Zealand and an international crackdown led agents to serving at least 20 search warrants across the globe.

The latest of sites to fall is FBI.gov, which finally broke at around 7:40 pm EST Thursday evening.

Less than an hour after the DoJ and Universal sites came down, the website for the RIAA, or Recording Industry Association of America, went offline as well. Shortly before 6 p.m EST, the government’s Copyright.gov site went down as well. Thirty minutes later came the site for BMI, or Broadcast Music, Inc, the licensing organization that represents some of the biggest names in music.

Also on Thursday, MPAA.org returned an error as Anonymous hacktivists managed to bring down the website for the Motion Picture Association of America. The group, headed by former senator Chris Dodd, is an adamant supporter of both PIPA and SOPA legislation.
Universal Music Group, or UMG, is the largest record company in the United States and under its umbrella are the labels Interscope-Geffen-A&M, the Island Def Jam Motown Music Group and Mercury Records.

Brown adds that “more is coming” and Anonymous-aligned hacktivists are pursuing a joint effort with others to “damage campaign raising abilities of remaining Democrats who support SOPA.”

Although many members of Congress have just this week changed their stance on the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act, or SOPA, the raid on Megaupload Thursday proved that the feds don’t need SOPA or its sister legislation, PIPA, in order to pose a threat to the Web.

Brown adds that operatives involved in the project will use an “experimental campaign” and search engine optimization techniques “whereby to forever saddle some of these congressmen with their record on this issue.”

via Anonymous downs government, music industry sites in largest attack ever — RT.

Hackers expose Israeli government SCADA logins

By Rick Burgess
January 11, 2012, 2:30 PM EST

The drama surrounding Israel continues to unfold as a group of Anonymous hackers expose employee logins to several government websites. Perhaps most disturbingly, this document (may be taken down any time) also claims the credentials provided give access to a number of Israel’s SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) systems. The document itself includes emails, passwords, hashes and 10 IP addresses that are supposedly Israeli SCADA systems.

At this time of this writing, there were few details regarding the implications. However, such systems are typically used to monitor and regulate processes for industrial control purposes, such as a agricultural complexes, factories or public services and utilities.

Of the information provided, logins included the following domains: mod.gov.il (Israel’s Ministry of Defense), idf.gov.il (Israeli Defense Force), beijing.mfa.gov.il (Israeli Chinese Embassy) and hy.health.gov.il (Israel’s Ministry of Health). It is unknown whether or not the exposed logins provide any meaningful access, let alone work, but having this information out in the wild could prove serious.

This unwittingly timely article at PCMag reports on a speech given at the third annual International Conference on Cyber Security in New York City addressing security problem with SCADA systems. “It would take us 5 years and $25 million to change a SCADA system,” a speaker said. Here’s more:

In recent years, we’ve seen an alarming number of breaches (and misreports) into critical infrastructure of industrial control systems, like electric and power grids, known simply as SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition). 0 Comments, [sic] that enduring, infrastructure-targeting beast of a computer worm that crippled Iran’s nuclear facilities in 2010, probably comes to mind first. Duqu, another worm believed to be written by the same authors, was programmed to steal industrial trade secrets. Together the worms have infected around 100,000 computers equipped with Siemens PLCs and Windows-based industrial software.

What motivates the cyber criminals behind such attacks? It’s not hard to imagine: terrorism, extortion, political activism.

The stolen logins may are most likely linked to an intrusion credited to 0xOmar, earlier this month. Potentially, the attack exposed 400,000 credit cards, names, addresses, Israel ID numbers (Social Security) and other details of Israeli citizens. The hacker claimed to be a member of Anonymous, but there is no word whether or not he was involved in today’s activities.

Earlier, the Israeli government condemned 0xOmar’s actions and compared hacking to terrorism. In the very strongly worded statement, an official said that no aggressor would be immune to Israel’s retaliation. However, it appears that message hasn’t intimidated hackers.

via Hackers expose Israeli government SCADA logins – TechSpot News.

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