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'Anons' cuffed by Australian Federal Police

Two arrested for attacks on Indonesian and Australian websites

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The Australian Federal Police (AFP) claim to have arrested two chaps who conducted defacement and denial of service attacks on Indonesian and Australian government websites while using the name and iconography of Anonymous.

The AFP says a 40-year-old from Scarborough in Western Australia has been charged with aiding “the unauthorised modification of Melbourne IT Limited computer network located in Brisbane, Queensland to cause impairment” and “Unauthorised modification of Indonesian Government web servers, to cause impairment”. This suspect has been charged under Section 477.2 of the Criminal Code Act 1995, which allows for up to ten years imprisonment.

The Reg understands the 40-year-old may operate under the name "Lorax". It is of course very hard to know if that is the same "Lorax" that broadcasts on Anonymous Radio. The Australian Broadcasting Corporatio reports the man who fronted the court was one Adam John Bennett and he was released on condition he not use the internet for anything other than "banking, employment and legal advice."

An 18-year-old from Penrith in New South Wales has been charged with “unauthorised modification of data to Netspeed ISP located in Canberra, ACT, to cause impairment” and “Unauthorised access to and modification of restricted data belonging to the ACT Long Service Leave Board, Canberra, ACT.” This suspect has been charged under Section 477.2 for the first charge and 478.1 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 for the second. The latter can see the guilty do two years behind bars.

The AFP's statement on the arrests says “It will be alleged in court that these two men were known to each other online and targeted organisations including a large internet service provider and web servers hosting Australian and Indonesian government websites.” It's not clear if the two stand accused of acting in concert. That each has been charged with different offences suggests they were not collaborators.

The force executed search warrants yesterday, and says “A number of computer hard drives and other equipment were seized during the warrants,” adding that “It is anticipated that it will take several months to analyse these items due to the amount of information stored on them.”

The crimes of which the 18-year-old stands accused are of course serious. But the 40-year-old looks a bigger prize, as Australia/Indonesia relations are fraught. Cuffing someone accused of attacking Indonesia will go down very well in the world's fourth-most-populous nation.

That Anonymous Australia and Anonymous Indonesia fought a brief skirmish in November 2013 adds further interest to the case. There's no evidence the 40-year-old was a combatant, but the AFP characterises the investigation that resulted in the arrests as “long-term”, so it's conceivable they've been watching the suspect before – or since – the November 2013 incidents. ®

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