FBI site hacked; NATO challenged

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June 6, 2011 9:04 AM EST

The same group, "LulzSec," that attacked Sony Corp's film site also went to destroy an FBI-affiliated Web site in Atlanta in retribution to the NATO alliance's "act of war" against hackers. 

LulzSec on June 6 said in its Web site http://lulzsecurity.com that in response to NATO's and U.S. President Barrack Obama's decision to up the stakes with regard to hacking and now treat hacking as "an act of war", the group just hacked an FBI affiliated Web site, Infragard, specifically the Atlanta chapter.

The hackers said they leaked the user base, including the 180 accounts.  "Most of them reuse their passwords in other places, which is heavily frowned upon in the FBI/Infragard handbook and generally everywhere else too," the group said.

LulzSec's identified one of its victims, Karim Hijazi, who allegedly used his Infragard password for his personal Gmail, and the Gmail of the company he owns.  "Unveillance, a whitehat company that specializes in data breaches and botnets, was compromised because of Karim's incompetence.  We stole all of his personal emails and his company emails.  We also briefly took over, among other things, their servers and their botnet control panel," the hackers said.

LulzSec said that after informing Karim, he offered to pay the group to eliminate his competitors through illegal hacking means in return for the group's silence.

NATO vs Hackers

A report by NATO, a powerful military alliance of countries from North America and Europe, noted that the Internet has made state and society much more vulnerable to attacks such as computer intrusions, scrambling software programs, undetected insiders within computer firewalls, or cyber terrorists.

NATO Parliamentary Assembly General Rapporteur Lord Jopling said in his report that Anonymous, a prominent group of on-line hackers, poses a hazard that needs to be taken seriously.

Anonymous has led a campaign against companies stopped providing services for WikiLeaks, which released the US diplomatic cables and other sensitive information.  The U.S. government received the most serious blow when the "anti-secrecy" organization WikiLeaks published, among other things, Pentagon documents on the Afghan war and the Iraq War and 250,000 confidential US diplomatic cables on diplomats' candid assessments of terrorist threats and the behaviour of world leaders.

According to the NATO report, the US authorities suspect that the material was leaked by Private Bradley Manning stationed in the Persian Gulf who passed these files on to the "whistleblower" organization.

Anonymous earlier launched a campaign against Iran, Australia and the Church of Scientology. In its on-line seven-point manifesto, Anonymous announced its engagement in "the first infowar ever fought" and named PayPal as its enemy.  Anonymous has also been linked to the first cyber attacks against Sony.

Jopling warned that Anonymous could potentially hack into sensitive government, military, and corporate files. 

He suggested, among many things, that on the global level, NATO should support initiatives to negotiate at least some international legal ground rules for the cyber domain.  He added that NATO should consider applying common funding procedures for procurement of some critical cyber defence capabilities for its member states.

Jopling stated, "As sources of cyber attacks are usually impossible to trace, it cannot be said with certainty who has, so far, dominated "the cyber world".  Nevertheless, when it comes to the involvement of states in cyber attacks, Russia and China are said to be the usual suspects.  From what we know today, terrorist groups such as al Qaeda do not yet have the capability to carry out such attacks.  In the future, however, organized crime and hacker groups could sell their services to terrorist groups."

"We accept your threats, NATO.  Game on, losers," LulzSec said, in a press release announcing its hacking of the FBI affiliated site.

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