Feeds

Stratfor settles class-action over Anon megahack with freebies

You want fries with that bucket-o-geopolitical-intel?

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Stratfor has agreed to forgo $1.75m in income to settle a class action lawsuit arising from a high-profile hack by hacktivist group Anonymous against the global intelligence firm's systems last December.

Anonymous-affiliated hackers broke into Stratfor's systems in the run-up to Christmas last year before publishing hundreds of thousands of email addresses belonging to subscribers along with an estimated 4,000 customer credit records. Various Anons boasted of plans to use the stolen credit card data to make donations to charities, including the Red Cross. Any such transaction would have more than likely been identified and reversed, however.

Stratfor's website was also thrashed during the attack, which allowed hackers to extract confidential internal emails, which soon found their way onto WikiLeaks.

Chief among several mistakes that left Stratfor wide open to attack was a failure to encrypt the credit card files that hacktivists stole and later dumped online. David Sterling of Sterling & Sterling, a New York-area insurance broker and Stratfor subscriber, filed a class-action lawsuit over the breach.

Stratfor has offered to settle the suit by offering each claimant free access to its service for a month, something that would normally cost $29, as well an eBook published by Stratfor called The Blue Book, priced at $12.99. Supplying these goods and services at no charge will leave Stratfor an estimated $1.75m out of pocket, Reuters reports. The private intelligence firm also agreed to pay $400,000 in legal fees.

US District Judge Denis Hurley gave his preliminary stamp of approval to the settlement earlier this month. A final hearing is set for 28 September.

Jeremy Hammond, 27, of Chicago, Illinois, was charged in March with access device fraud and hacking offences in relation to to the Stratfor hack. He is alleged to be the infamous Anonymous figure "Anarchaos".

Hammond's arrest took place with the assistance of LulzSec suspect turned FBI informant, Hector Xavier 'Sabu' Monsegur, officials said. Court documents reveal that Monsegur offered an FBI-supplied server as a repository for 20GB of data extracted from Stratfor, an offer that was accepted. ®

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

More from The Register

next story
Secure microkernel that uses maths to be 'bug free' goes open source
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
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
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
Four fake Google haxbots hit YOUR WEBSITE every day
Goog the perfect ruse to slip into SEO orfice
Putin: Crack Tor for me and I'll make you a MILLIONAIRE
Russian Interior Ministry offers big pile o' roubles for busting pro-privacy browser
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
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.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.