Every now and then you will hear about a hacking group that is new to the scene. This happens all of the time and it will continue to happen as long as we have the internet that we have now. Some of the groups that you hear about are just kids having fun and other groups are people who really know what they are doing and are out to either cause some serious damage or they are out to make a quick dollar. When it comes to this new group LulzSec, we do not know what they are up to yet. They claim that they do it for the lulz and that might be true but until we see more of their handiwork we will not be able to make a final decision.
While this group is the new face on the block, it is not the first one to make a noise in public recently. While usually hacker groups are known only to computer professionals, the group that is known as Anonymous has found their way into the public consciousness. They did it by allegedly attacking high profile targets over and over again. They did it so much that it got to the point where a lot of people in the public were starting to fear that they were unstoppable. So where do groups like this come from? What is their mission and why do they attack random targets? That is what I am going to talk about in this article. Hopefully by the end of the article you will have a good idea and you can prepare your organization from attacks from groups like this.
Where do these groups come from?
Some people seem to think that the Lulzsec group is a splinter of the larger group Anonymous. We do not know if that is true or not but it certainly does seem possible. The one thing that is notable about Anonymous besides their attacks is that they seem to be a very loose organization whose membership is fluid. You never know who is in the group from one point to the next. But this is only speculation. No-one is quite sure where this new group is from. So far they have been quite intelligent in mixing new sophisticated techniques and old school easy to do techniques in their attacks. This makes it very hard to put a profile on these guys. They could be just script kiddies who are extra talented or they could be professionals who are mixing up attacks so that no-one is able to figure out their true motives.
Who have they targeted so far?
Just recently it seems that their latest target was the main CIA web site. CIA stands for Central Intelligence Agency and it is a major crime fighting bureau in the United States. If it was indeed LulzSec who hacked the servers of the CIA then this is a very big deal and you can be sure that there will be a very swift response to the matter. Viewing Twitter recently it seems that the first response may not even come from the CIA if the latest tweets from th3j35t3r are anything to go by –
They have also targeted a bunch of very popular web based video games. While this may not seem like a big deal, these attacks has actually cost the companies behind them several millions of dollars. While the biggest attack that everyone heard about was against Sony, they have also allegedly attacked games such as Eve online and others. While the reported Sony attacks put them in a good light when it comes to other tech savvy people, the other games that were attacked was not such a good PR move, even with people they might consider to be allies.
Nobody knows who their next attack target is going to be since everything seems so random. There is no good reason that the group gives on their victims except for the fact that they do it for the ‘Lulz’.
How can they be stopped?
While it is possible to make a trace over the internet to stop groups like this and everyone makes mistakes, it really depends on how good these groups are as to whether they are going to be caught or not. There are a lot of people out there looking for them and if they make even one mistake then one of their enemies is going to use that fact to be able to get them. As a company or organization the best thing that you can do is to make sure that all of your network security is up to date. And if you do not have the proper security tools on your network make sure that is taken care of. Hire a professional to do a security audit to make sure that you have everything that you need.
When it comes to groups like this you never know what their true motivation is. So just make sure that you are prepared.