Feeds

Anonymous explodes MegaUpload clone 'scam'

AnonyUpload is nothing to do with us, sir

Boost IT visibility and business value

A supposedly "Anonymous-built" alternative to MegaUpload has been discredited by members of the hacktivist collective.

AnonyUpload sprung up days after a takedown operation against MegaUpload website, the arrest in New Zealand of its founders on copyright infringement charges, and a hacktivist backlash against government and entertainment industry websites linked to the takedown.

Rather than asking participants to download an attack tool, the assault used JavaScript code to blast traffic from any surfers who clicked on a link, whether unwittingly or not.

Meanwhile regular users of MegaUpload found themselves unable to access files they had uploaded to the cloud-based service.

In the midst of all this confusion, AnonyUpload appeared this week with claims to offer a "100% free" and "100% anonymous" file hosting and file-sharing services. The front page of the new site solicited for donation, supposedly needed to lease servers and hosting facilities in Russia. Strangely the blurb on the site warned of various reasons why trusting AnonyUpload with files might be a bad idea.

Anonyupload.com is a centralized service, when you upload files, they are stored in our hard drives, at a single location. And this is not good! It is the opposite of what the Internet is: decentralised.

There are many reasons why this is not good, the first is that some of you store personal information and files on machines which are not belonging to you, and that you do not have any control on. The second is that you are always going through the same wires, it means that someone could spy on it, monitors your activities, or decides to cut it off as it happened with megaupload.com. This can be avoided by using decentralized technologies, the first thing to do if you are interested in doing it, is to host your own content, on your own machines.

The reasons given on why anyone might want to use AnonyUpload despite these privacy and availability considerations - "because it is fun and technically interesting" - are pretty weak.

It's unclear whether AnonyUpload is a prank designed to make a wider point or a scam. One thing that became clear on Tuesday was that it was nothing to do with the mainstream of Anonymous. Several established accounts linked to the hacktivist collective have disowned AnonyUpload.

An update from AnonymouSabu is typical of these disavowals: "ATTN: Anonyuploads is not affiliated to us. Its someone trying to capitalize on media frenzy from Anonymous doing #opMegaupload."

Other Twitter accounts used by Anonymous in the past (such as @YourAnonNews) have gone even further, labelling AnonyUpload as a scam.

Security experts said that whether or not AnonyUpload is created by a faction of Anonymous, it ought to be avoided.

"My advice would be to avoid the AnonyUpload site, and certainly not donate any money," writes Graham Cluley of net security firm Sophos. "You don't know whose pockets you might be lining, and as AnonyUpload's own blurb makes clear there are 'many reasons' why their service is 'not good'." ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Déjà vu: Virgin Media jacks up broadband prices
Screw copper phone lines, we're UNIQUE, bleats telco
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
What's the nature of your emergency, Vodafone?
Oh, you've dialled the wrong number for ad fibs, rules ASA
EE network whacked by 'PDP authentication failure' blunder
Carrier is 'aware' of cockup, working on a fix NOW
ROAD TRIP! An FCC road trip – Leahy demands net neutrality debate across US
You crashed watchdog's site, now time to crash its ears
Google's so smart it's discovered SHARKS HAVE TEETH
Congratulations, world media, for rediscovering submarine cable armour
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
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?