Feeds

UK.gov braces for Anonymous hacklash

Battle lines drawn up in cyberspace

SANS - Survey on application security programs

UK government websites have been warned to brace themselves for website attacks in the wake of the arrest of five Britons as part of an investigation into Anonymous this week.

Members of the loosely knit Anonymous hacking collective condemned the arrests, arguing that denial of services attacks are a legitimate protest tactic, comparable with staging a sit-in or picketing. In a statement (one-page PDF/153KB), the group criticised the police operation as disproportionate, describing it as "a serious declaration of war from yourself, the UK government, to us, Anonymous, the people".

Information security agency GovCertUK has taken this implied threat seriously, issuing an advisory urging government websites to prepare defences (two-page PDF/32.7kb) against possible attack.

We would like to make you aware of a threat issued by the Anonymous group in reaction to the five arrests made yesterday by the Metropolitan Police.

The threat was directed towards the UK government in an open letter by Anonymous on their website. This has since been circulated around many open source websites.

In light of this threat we would advise you to be vigilant against any new signs of DDoS activity you may encounter, and to notify us if such activity occurs.

In related developments, the five UK suspects in the case have been released on police bail until April, pending further inquiries. All five remain unnamed.

A Scotland Yard statement warns that those tempted to download attack software in order to participate in further DDoS attacks also risk arrest.

The arrest of five suspected Anonymous members on Thursday was accompanied by raids on the homes of 40 suspects by the FBI and follows a month after a 16-year-old Dutch youngster was arrested over an alleged denial of service attack against Visa and Mastercard in protest against their decision to suspend an account maintained by WikiLeaks. Scotland Yard confirmed it was investigating WikiLeaks last month in the wake of denial of service attacks against entertainment industry websites and others hassling torrent sites and file-sharers.

It's not clear if the latest round of arrests involve attacks on organisations opposed to file-sharers or those seen to be against controversial whistle-blowing site WikiLeaks.

Participants in both sets of attacks were invited to use an attack tool, called the Low Orbit Ion Cannon, which generates waves of junk traffic against targeted sites. By default, the application does nothing to disguise the IP addresses of participants. Logs from attacked servers would record this information, making it a straightforward task for police to request ISPs to disclose the real world addresses of suspects in such attacks. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
Jack the RIPA: Blighty cops ignore law, retain innocents' comms data
Prime minister: Nothing to see here, go about your business
Singapore decides 'three strikes' laws are too intrusive
When even a prurient island nation thinks an idea is dodgy it has problems
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.