Feeds

Police probe British Anonymous activists

Scotland Yard on the case

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

The Metropolitan Police has confirmed it is investigating the activities of Anonymous, the online activism movement recently under the spotlight for its DDoS attacks in support of WikiLeaks.

The probe was launched several months ago, apparently following complaints about Anonymous' attacks on the website of ACS:Law, a London legal firm controversially targeting file-sharers. It also targeted the BPI, the record industry trade body.

"Earlier this year the Metropolitan Police Service received a number of allegations of 'denial-of-service' cyber attacks against several companies by a group calling themselves Anonymous," the Met said in a statement.

"The Metropolitan Police Service is monitoring the situation relating to recent and ongoing denial of service attacks and will investigate where appropriate."

Anonymous attacked ACS:Law in September as part of its "Operation: Payback Is A Bitch", which targeted organisations connected to the music and film industries in Europe and the US.

Further attacks were launched after the firm's founder, Andrew Crossley, mocked the group's initial DDoS in an interview with The Register. Disastrous efforts to restore the website then publicly exposed confidential company files, including the personal data of ACS:Law's targets. The Information Commissioner is investigating the apparent breach of the Data Protection Act by the firm.

Meanwhile, the Met's investigation of the incident – and the more recent WikiLeaks-related attacks on the websites of Visa, Mastercard and PayPal – could have serious consequences for British members of Anonymous. Mounting a DDoS attack is an offence under the Computer Misuse Act, and carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

Dutch computer crime police, who have close links to the Met's Police Central e-Crime Unit, have already arrested two alleged participants. Anonymous' LOIC tool, which coordinates its DDoS attacks, makes no attempt to disguise the sources of the bombardment of requests it fires at target servers.

A Greek web designer has also been detained after he was traced from an Anonymous press release. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Bono: Apple will sort out monetising music where the labels failed
Remastered so hard it would be difficult or impossible to master it again
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.