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AntiLeaks group claim responsibility for WikiLeaks attacks

DDoS hampers Trapwire surveillance system leaks

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

The WikiLeaks website has been under a major DDoS attack over the last few days and a group calling itself AntiLeaks has claimed responsibility.

"We are young adults, citizens of the United States of America and are deeply concerned about the recent developments with Julian Assange and his attempt at asylum in Ecuador," said the group's self-proclaimed leader, who calls himself Diet Pepsi.

"Assange is the head of a new breed of terrorist. We are doing this as a protest against his attempt to escape justice into Ecuador. This would be a catalyst for many more like him to rise up in his place. We will not stop and they will not stop us."

According to the WikiLeaks Twitter feed, the website, and those of its associates and mirrors, have been hit by a massive DDoS attack reaching 10Gbits/s and using a more complex system than a standard bulk UDP or ICMP packet flooding. The range of IP addresses is huge, indicating either thousands of machines taking part or some really good simulation.

The AntiLeaks group hasn't been heard of before and its Twitter feed only started this month. While it's possible they are simply claiming the attacks rather than carrying them out, it's clear the attacks are being taken by WikiLeaks as an attempt to shut down information.

The attack comes as WikiLeaks is trying to distribute more emails from the hacking of private security group Stratfor Global Intelligence. This latest batch, released in the last few days, concern the existence of a US-based monitoring system called Trapwire.

Trapwire was set up by the Abraxis Corporation, a private security operation fun by former intelligence officers and headed by ex-CIA man Richard Helms. The Abraxis CEO said in an interview seven years ago that the system was designed to share threat information and establish patterns of data that could be used to predict attacks.

"It can collect information about people and vehicles that is more accurate than facial recognition, draw patterns, and do threat assessments of areas that may be under observation from terrorists," he said. "The application can do things like 'type' individuals so if people say 'medium build,' you know exactly what that means from that observer."

Helms claimed then that it was the largest source of threat data outside the US government, and the leaked emails show its scope has widened further. According to one from Fred Burton, Stratfor's vice president for intelligence, the Trapwire network is now covering most North American and British high-value targets (HVT.)

"I knew these hacks when they were GS-12's at the CIA. God Bless America. Now they have EVERY major HVT in CONUS, the UK, Canada, Vegas, Los Angeles, NYC as clients," he wrote.

An annual Trapwire license will set the user back $150,000 he said, with a quarter-million dollar signup fee on top.

Meanwhile, the attacks on Wikileaks go on and the organization is appealing for more funds to get extra bandwidth. AntiLeaks might have a few more problems on their hands, however, if Anonymous is to be believed. ®

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