Feeds

Anonymous reverse ferrets on CIA.gov takedown

'We blacked out website merely reported the outage'

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

Loosely connected hacking collective Anonymous claimed responsibility for making the CIA's website inaccessible on Friday - but later said it was just reporting the event.

The apparent distributed denial of service attack against the spy agency's web presence follows a week after the release of a recording of a conference call between the FBI and British law enforcement officials discussing the progress of various cases against alleged members of Anonymous and LulzSec.

A Twitter account associated with the activists' movement claimed credit for the takedown before backtracking and saying it was merely "noting" that the cia.gov site was inaccessible.

The initial statement "#Anonymous takes down main CIA website cia.gov; site is still down | goo.gl/UL2ij" was followed by "We'd remind media that if we report a hack or ddos attack, it doesn't necessarily mean we did it... FYI" from the same YouAnonNews Twitter account a day later.

The conflicting statements have created a certain amount of confusion about who was responsible for the outage.

A CIA representative confirmed problems with the agency's website without commenting on the reasons for the downtime, saying: "We are aware of the problems accessing our Web site, and are working to resolve them."

The cia.gov site returned to normal operation on Saturday. The site (which essentially serves as an online brochure for the spy agency and an outlet for public relations material) has been the target of hacktivists in the past, including a June 2011 attack by LulzSec.

Other elements of Anonymous launched attacks against the Mexican Senate and Interior Ministry websites, in a protest against proposed Mexican anti-piracy laws that hacktivists compared to the SOPA legislation north of the border.

And in a further attack against US law enforcement, other hacktivists posted (partially redacted) information swiped from police and government servers in Alabama.

Hackers claimed they had obtained highly sensitive personal information on 46,000 Alabama residents, including names, Social Security numbers, dates of birth, criminal records, and license plate numbers from insecure state government servers. A censored version of a sample of the hacked data was uploaded to PasteBin.

Anonymous said the hack was in protest against controversial Alabama state immigration laws. ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
NEW, SINISTER web tracking tech fingerprints your computer by making it draw
Have you been on YouPorn lately, perhaps? White House website?
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
NUDE SNAPS AGENCY: NSA bods love 'showing off your saucy selfies'
Swapping other people's sexts is a fringe benefit, says Snowden
Own a Cisco modem or wireless gateway? It might be owned by someone else, too
Remote code exec in HTTP server hands kit to bad guys
British data cops: We need greater powers and more money
You want data butt kicking, we need bigger boots - ICO
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
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.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.