Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/03/24/hackersblog_quits/

Romanian hacking group downs tools

HackersBlog crew weary of the road

By John Leyden

Posted in Security, 24th March 2009 15:11 GMT

A controversial Romanian hacker group famous for exposing security shortcomings on corporate and anti-virus websites has disbanded.

The HackersBlog collective said it was calling it a day because their unpaid work in exposing SQL injection vulnerabilities was eating up the members' free time and had become boring.

Well then, we’ve gotten to that point where most of the team members had "enough" of it. Dont wacko on this. We are not pulling the plug because of any external factors or of fear. We simply dont have the time and desire to continue. Contrary to many opinions, we do have a private life.

Recent disclosures by HackersBlog on website security have been contested by the firms involved, including BT, the Daily Telegraph and Camelot. In signing off, HackersBlog fired back at what it claims is a culture of "corporate spin" in responding to the disclosure of website security flaws. An update, posted on Tuesday by 2fingers and entitled This is the end, in an apparent Doors/Jim Morrison tribute, explains.

Large companies will never admit to the problems they have, no matter how large they are. This is common practice in the business and it serves maintaining their public image clean. Don’t swallow the bait. Official notes are only meant to disinform and mislead you from the truth about the dangers you were exposed to

HackersBlog thanked media outlets that have reported fairly on its work, singling out local radio station RadioLynx, IT news website Softpedia and El Reg for special mention. The group added that it hoped other security researchers and hackers would pick up the baton of website in-security disclosure it has carried over recent weeks.

The Romanian hacker group came to prominence in early February after posting about website security vulnerabilities on the websites of security vendors, such as Kaspersky Lab and BitDefender, posting obfuscated screenshots to back up their concerns. More recently the group, whose most famous member is a hacker called Unu, moved onto scouring for database flaws involving the websites of large UK businesses.

HackersBlog applied scruples to its work that meant it avoided revealing website problems that had a high risk of exploitation, or distributing data obtained from vulnerable websites.

An interview with the group, by security researcher Rik Ferguson of Trend Micro, that goes into its motivation and methods in greater depth can be found here. ®