The Australian branch of the amorphous hacktavist group Anonymous leaked more than 2.8 GB of emails today. The pludered data is a pretty complete catalogue of all the external and internal communications of members of the Church of Scientology in Australia. The contents of the leaked emails is seedy at best, as there are some communications between ‘higher ranked’ officials from the church discussing sensitive matters.
The information has been separated into 5 files ranging from 299MB to 1.5GB. They have been uploaded to multiple file lockers and can be downloaded by anyone. The adresses to the download links can be found on the original Pastebin publication from Anonymous Australia. You can also read a sample of the communications in two lists on PWNY.biz here and here.
From the few that we’ve read, many are in German so get ready ready for alot of Google translator copy-pasting. Several are PGP encrypted communications so they will probably never be publicly legible. Otherwise there is lots of incredibly poorly written English emails with plenty of jargon and of little interest. We’ll keep digging and let you know if we can come up with anything cool. If you find anything interesting, please let us know in the comments!
The hacktavist group Anonymous is said to be currently attacking Facebook. This is part of the response to the shuttering of Megaupload, the webs most popular file locker, on January 17 2012. Anonymous has been on a Denial of Service spree these last few days, causing service outages for a number of worldwide government agencies, companies and organizations that were implicated or condoned the Megaupload raids. The validity of the reports are questionable though.
So far the attack (if its actually happening) has yielded few results, Facebook was reported to be running slowly by a few twitter users. Some of the Facebook applications and games were also either slow or inaccesible. The DDoS attempt will probably be unsuccessful on a site of this size, as Facebook has numerous counter-measure to this type of harassment.
Because of the amorphous structure of Anonymous, it’s not certain that the attack is actually taking place. Some members or subgroups may be acting alone or may not have been able to drum up enough support from other members. Some anonymous mouthpieces on Twitter are claiming Facebook is under attack while others (like the one pictures below) are denying it.
Facebook’s connection to the Megaupload raids is not immediately clear, and some question why it is a target. The motivation is mostly to spread awareness about the harm of censorship and the ACTA bills. The anons posit that the recent pro copyright holder legislation that has been put forward around the world is not being met with enough public backlash and that they need a “wakeup call”.
Update 9:15PM EST
It looks like it was not Anonymous that caused the outage after all. Trolled indeed.
In response to both the takedown of Megaupload today and the SOPA/PIPA bills that are being mulled over in the United states the hacktavist group Anonymous has responded by taking down several websites with a distributed denial of service attack. Both the Universal Music and American Department of Justice websites were taken offline by the attack.
That said, even when the number of LOIC attackers is high, it still would not be enough to take down these types of high profile websites. Anynymous must have access to a bot net and/or is pooling resources with other groups to carry out and sustain such effective attacks.
Anonymous Takedown Catalogue
Updated as of 8:00PM EST January 22 2011
Most Site are now back up and running but, with fewer numbers, the attack continues on a few sites. The Brazilian arm of anonymous seems to still be hard at work. They are continuing the DDoS on a broad spectrum of websites, the hit list of 114 websites all with .br TDLs has been posted on pastebin. We’ve included some of the most notable downed sites on the list below.
While there are many proxy server solutions to remain anonymous, currently the best and easiest way to mask your ip is through onion routing, using tor. The basic idea behind onion routing is that your connection will go through a series of tor routers that only know who the connection is from and where they need to make the next connection. This means that your connection will go through a series of other servers that together mask your IP address.
You can download the latest tor bundle for your operating system at:
Draw Backs of Anonymous Browsing
The first is that when you make google searches, they will ask you for human confirmation, this is really easy, you will just have to enter a captcha.
The second drawback that while you are browsing anonymously it is strongly recommended that you do not use any plug-ins. This includes flash. This is because there could be a tor router that could inject a new executable that your machine would run. To bypass this you can disable tor when watching flash videos.
The third drawback is the speed. It will take longed to send and receive data because you are going through so many different connections.
Anonymous browsing is not encrypted browsing. There is a big difference between anonymous browsing and encrypted browsing. encrypted, and signed data can be transmit through the tor network but just because you are using tor to mask your IP does not mean you are secure.