Adult Content Warning

This community may contain adult content that is not suitable for minors. By closing this dialog box or continuing to navigate this site, you certify that you are 18 years of age and consent to view adult content.

They don't forgive, they don't forget. Expect them.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Beefy Phil, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. Beefy Phil

    Beefy Phil
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    5
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,618
    Anonymous has been getting some heightened MSM attention lately, mostly for their involvement with the MENA protests. At first, I had them pegged as merely a /b/tard faction that liked to cause all sorts of amusing trouble for lame media pundits who don't get the joke.



    Then I read this.

    "It's recently been revealed that the U.S. government contracted HBGary Federal for the development of software which could create multiple fake social media profiles to manipulate and sway public opinion on controversial issues by promoting propaganda."

    Apparently, Anonymous hackers leaked firm emails revealing the agreement after HBGary's CEO threatened to unmask the organization's members.

    Wired's coverage of Anonymous' war with Aaron Barr

    Focus: What is your opinion of Anonymous, and "hacktivism" in general? Is it a force for good, for anarchy, or just a bunch of bored nerds venting frustration? Is there real potential in this kind of faceless collective action?
     
    #1 Beefy Phil, Feb 22, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2015
  2. DrFrylock

    DrFrylock
    Expand Collapse
    The White

    Reputation:
    23
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,571
    We kind of had this discussion with respect to the Wikileaks issue, but all the activities of Anonymous lately have broadened the scope of what's going on.

    A fascinating (if annoyingly long and largely retarded) read is when Penny, CEO of HBGary Federal's parent company HBGary, went into one of Anonymous' chatrooms. Her husband Greg, who is also involved with HBGary, comes in.

    My favorite chatter in the whole log is "Agamemnon." He seems to be trying to act as the 'adult' in the channel, who is going to moderate discussion, set the tone of the dialogue, and have a reasonable discussion about Anonymous' good and pure motives. Unfortunately in all the noise and rabble, he can't get anybody to pay attention to him. I think there's something poetic about that.

    Anonymous clearly wants it not just both ways, but every way. They want to act like they have no leadership--that the group is just the emergent behavior of a bunch of independent actors. But they also want to act like they have a coordinated purpose and a message, and that a small group can make deals on behalf of the whole. They want to act like they have altruistic motives and are hacktivists, but then they resort to cheap blackmail against people to get what they want, regardless of who they are blackmailing. Mr. Agamemnon above states that Anonymous does not negotiate, literally seconds before he tries to broker a deal wherein Penny and Greg "burn notice" Aaron and donate money to Bradley Manning's defense fund so they won't release Greg's personal emails.

    What I see is a bunch of overgrown adolescents with massive insecurity problems. They, like so many hackers before them, try to make up for their insecurities by wielding an outsized power: the ability to sneak into other people's private information and systems with relatively little risk to themselves. Before computers, BBSes, and the Internet, they would have simply sat in the basement mumbling to themselves about how someday they're going to burn down the building. But the Internet and the fallibility of human security systems give them a much more effective outlet. It's more than a little pathetic.

    I have a bit more tolerance for the /b/tards over at 4chan. At least they're honest enough to admit that they hack and harass for the lulz--because they can and because they find fucking with people enjoyable. There's no pretext that they're fighting a war or opposing a corrupt government.

    If any of this 'hacktivism' were achieving results or doing anything but letting the hacktivists admire the size of their own e-Penises, I might reconsider. But look at Wikipedia's list of notable hacktivist events. They're about as impressive as the Ethnic Student Unions at the college I went to "raising awareness" of various world causes, like how many Muslim babies the Jews eat every year (or vice-versa).

    I dunno, maybe I'm turning into a fascist in my old age. I just have never bought the argument that there's a massive conspiracy out to get everyone, and the only ones standing between us and them are the legions of overgrown man-children that are Anonymous.
     
  3. Kubla Kahn

    Kubla Kahn
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    544
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    9,531
    Im not really well read on the whole subject so Im curios as too what laws or potential laws help too combat these hacktivist activities? They do sort of an amplified Wahoo type thing am I right? It seems like uncharted water legally but Ive always thought at some point in time that there would be some sort of online bullying/online harassment legislation brought up by lawmakers looking to get headlines on the subject (though the section Frylock quotes seems like straight blackmail, do Anon users get charged with this?). Hell we even had a debate on how much was too much for good old Ryan Milly. I thought the catalyst was going to be tweener girls that hung themselves over hacked myspaces but shit really started hitting the fan when the whole wikileaks thing blew up a while ago. If there is one group you don't fuck with it's the CIA and US Gob'ment...
     
  4. Binary

    Binary
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    226
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    3,054
    It's not uncharted legal water at all.

    They broken into servers, they took down websites, they socially engineered (read: lied) to employees to gain access to data, they deleted large amounts of files and backups, they stole sensitive information and they published it to the world. All of these are actual crimes and happen all the time.

    They broke probably two dozen laws, not to mention HBGary was in the middle of being sold during this debacle so there's probably quite a civil suit that could be had if they chose to pursue damages.
     
  5. Spoz

    Spoz
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2009
    Messages:
    140
    Location:
    The Friend Zone
    A force for anarchy? It is anarchy. There's nothing mysterious about anonymous - it's exactly what I'd expect to happen if internet nerds of that specific personality type found each other online. Kinda like TiB now that I think of it.

    Just like a school of fish can appear to be a singular organism, anonymous appears to be an entity with real motives but it's not - sure they can all agree on things that are "lulzworthy" and rig a Time magazine contest but when it comes to actual activism, they've yet to actually acomplish anything. Theyre still just lazy internet nerds with a half dozen or so real hackers in their midst.

    Do they have potential? Sure. What's interesting though is that governments around the world are recognising it first and implementing the ability to shut down communication services to impede the formation of a cohesive group, should it ever become necessary. This has come to light most recently in the middle east (Egypt & Libya), but the western world is just as bad, the UK, USA and Australia in particular - the only difference being westerners are too fat and lazy to get out of our computer chairs. Hence, the few 'activists' that we have do all their 'activising' from behind a keyboard.

    Hm. Not sure where this rant was headed. There's no mid-week drunk thread so I have to find other outlets.
     
  6. StayFrosty

    StayFrosty
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2010
    Messages:
    1,149
    I'm not defending Anonymous here - they've done some amusing things, but they're not exactly champions of the civil rights cause. That said, if this Aaron Barr's portrayal in the linked article is anywhere near accurate, this guy is a bumbling, self-deluded moron. He seriously comes across as a walking billboard for ineptitude and incompetence. Anonymous are assholes, yeah, but this guy practically dropped to his knees and begged to be fucked with.
     
  7. vex

    vex
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Messages:
    111
    I'm not sure if this was posted in another thread on TiB, but here's the technical "how" they messed up Aaron Barr:http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/...eaks-the-inside-story-of-the-hbgary-hack.ars/
    As far as that story in particular, I think it's awesome that the CEO of a security firm tried to use anon to gain media coverage and then they tore his company's website, pillaged the e-mails and released the info.

    Focus: Hearing about what anon does always makes me happy. For example, when credit card companies stopped processing donations to wikileaks, I was very happy to hear that someone tried to let them know that that was not cool. When the CEO of a security company had his security company hacked, I thought the irony was delicious.

    I find the idea of a group of people letting large "untouchable" corporations know how we feel is awesome. Everyday, companies that don't give a fuck keep doing us wrong and there is nothing for the lone client to do. I don't mean to hate on large corporations in general, but I would like to think that we would all be much happier if companies cared about our satisfaction and tried to be as transparent as possible.
     
  8. Noland

    Noland
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    41
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    Messages:
    2,237
    Location:
    New Orleans
    There was a thread on Fark not long ago about Anonymous hacking the Westboro Baptist Church's website. They went back and forth with each other, Westboro claiming Anonymous had said they were going to attack their site and Anonymous saying Westboro was just saying that to drum up publicity. What the truth is, I don't know. Westboro's site is down currently which may or may not mean anything.

    I think these guys are mostly pricks, but as a general rule anyone that fucks with Westboro is good in my book, so I'm conflicted.
     
  9. KIMaster

    KIMaster
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    1
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,870
    Hmmm...I wonder why this isn't a much bigger story? Or, if there are doubts about its veracity, investigated deeper? And can you imagine if a story like this came out during the Bush regime? It would be round-the-clock headline news.
     
  10. Fracas

    Fracas
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2009
    Messages:
    139
    Location:
    Arizona Bay
    I like the way Anonymous punked the Church of Scientology - the Thetans will never fully recover from that, and at least a few people's lives will be a lot happier as a result. They're obnoxious, self-righteous, hypocritical nerdboys, sure. But I enjoy reading about what they do and the issues that they force us to confront. In many cases, sunshine is still the best disinfectant.
     
  11. DrFrylock

    DrFrylock
    Expand Collapse
    The White

    Reputation:
    23
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,571
    Yeah, I'm pretty sure making fake profiles to friend you on Facebook is a violation of the Geneva conventions.

    /facepalm

    Today at least one member of Anonymous did something I didn't believe was possible: making a member of the Westboro Baptist Church into the most reasonable and logical person in the room.

    Recap: WBC claims that they got a letter from Anonymous threatening to hack them and etc. Anonymous claims that they didn't write it; it was WBC (or someone related to them) doing a Joe-job on Anonymous to drum up publicity for WBC.

    Shirley from WBC asks the most logical question yet: If you're Anonymous, and you don't know who is and isn't a member, how can you claim that nobody from Anonymous sent the letter? The anonymous representative of Anonymous then says basically "oh, well, you know, it doesn't seem like anybody I know..." Very convincing.

    Somebody DOSed the WBC sites or took them down, and Anonymous' defended itself by quoting the famous philosopher Butt-Head: "huh huh, huh huh, huh huh, that was like...other kids...and stuff."

    Then, during the interview, Anonymous decides to actually hack a WBC site right there, while simultaneously claiming to be the "mature" ones in the situation. Fuck, even on World's Dumbest Criminals it's pretty rare to see someone commit a crime on TV on purpose.

    Unbelievable. All these people need to get a goddamn life.
     
  12. BL1Y

    BL1Y
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    1
    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2010
    Messages:
    2,012
    I think their are some actual fraud laws implicated. I would look back at news coverage on the stories about people making fake facebook profiles to harass people, but I don't fucking do legal research any more.
     
  13. LatinGroove

    LatinGroove
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    9
    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    Messages:
    584
    Location:
    Texas
    The US is already there as well, they just haven't had the necessity to exercise that power.

    Executive order 10995.

    <a class="postlink" href="http://www.fas.org/irp/offdocs/eo/eo-10995.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://www.fas.org/irp/offdocs/eo/eo-10995.htm</a>
     
  14. Juice

    Juice
    Expand Collapse
    Moderately Gender Fluid

    Reputation:
    987
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    9,664
    Location:
    Boston
    The whole "Anonymous" thing is contrived. As many of you know, The "Anonymous" people that give the Westboro Baptist Church shit also harassed an 11 year old girl into an emotional breakdown.



    As funny as the father in that video is, what did they really do to deserve it? An 11 year old talked shit in a youtube video? Its a weird psychological phenomenon where if you confronted any of the people they would go "Hey its not me, its all of us, dont point the finger over here." Except you have many people thinking that someone else to is blame.

    I dont think the Anonymous group (which isnt really a group, its just random people every time) really cares about their vigilantism/anarchism as much as they like the idea of themselves being anarchists.

    What you hear about is who they hack/harrass, but what you dont hear about is the FBI knocking on their doors a week later.
     
    #14 Juice, Feb 25, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2015
  15. Fracas

    Fracas
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2009
    Messages:
    139
    Location:
    Arizona Bay
    Two points of clarification:

    "Anonymous" is the social-activist wing of this crowd, the people who humiliated the Scientologists and retaliate against anyone who takes a swing at Julian Assange. The Jessi Slaughter thing was the work of the general /b/tard population, which tends to be more nihilistic and have a weird animus toward teenage girls.

    Also, the WBC/Anonymous thing was a hoax. To their credit, they usually go for bigger game.
     
  16. KIMaster

    KIMaster
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    1
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,870
    Where did I ever imply it was?

    For that matter, neither is tracking e-mails or tapping phonelines for potential words and phrases that would indicate a terrorist attack. (And tapping phones has been done in some form since the 1950s)

    Point is, most "Bush sucks! Bush is the Devil!!!" alarmists still treated it as a crazy violation of civil liberties by a fascist president, even though it probably didn't have jackshit to do with the president at all, but with the FBI and CIA.

    Remember the non-stop protests, articles, and television news coverage of the Patriot Act? I sure do.

    Yet, when something FAR more egregious happens during Obama's presidency, (and again, I'm not saying it has anything to do with the man, either) such as fake profiles to not only influence mass opinion, but actually spy on and harass people with divergent opinions, there isn't a word about it anywhere.

    If you don't see the double standard in news reporting, I don't know what more I can type.
     
  17. Tom Ato

    Tom Ato
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2009
    Messages:
    223
    Put down the glass of Haterade you geezer. Lord almighty your negativity be clogging up the Internets.

    I think this is cool as hell. Stick it to the man, and all that. I'm glad they were screwing with the church of Scientology, what with their propensity to run around unchecked and their willingness to fuck with anyone in their path. Some good shit right here.
     
  18. Muses

    Muses
    Expand Collapse
    Village Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2009
    Messages:
    38
    I would have agreed with you up until this latest news story broke.

    This time Anonymous finally did something awesome and actually sort of important: THEY EXPOSED A CORRUPT COMPANY HIRED BY THE GOVERNMENT TO SMEAR AND DISCREDIT A LEGITIMATE JOURNALIST. Sure they are overgrown man-children, but dude? Exposing real corruption is kind of a big deal. Not to mention they just saved some honest guy's career and livelihood. I don't understand why or how you could hate on Anonymous for this particular scandal.

    Perhaps Stephen Colbert can explain why Anonymous is awesome in this situation better than I can.
     
  19. Nettdata

    Nettdata
    Expand Collapse
    Mr. Toast

    Reputation:
    2,044
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2006
    Messages:
    19,299
    Yep.

    <a class="postlink" href="http://www.itpro.co.uk/631495/hbgary-ceo-steps-down-after-anonymous-breach" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;">http://www.itpro.co.uk/631495/hbgary-ce ... ous-breach</a>

    I've never been a big fan of the whole WikiLeaks thing, but really, I've never seen or heard of any repercussions from any leaks.

    At least here the actions of Anonymous have resulted in some action. Sure, him and his wife still own a vast majority of both companies, but it's a start.

    Any company that actively creates rootkits for sale to corporations and is as hypocritical as they are can go die a horrible death.
     
  20. DrFrylock

    DrFrylock
    Expand Collapse
    The White

    Reputation:
    23
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,571
    First off, I can't keep all the nuances of this clusterfuck straight, so correct me if I'm wrong: has anybody actually established a direct connection between the government and a campaign to discredit people? Has anybody actually established that such a campaign ever existed outside the minds of Aaron Barr and some people at HBGary Federal? From what I can tell, the story goes something like this:

    1. Bank of America hears that Wikileaks has some information on them.
    2. Hunton and Williams is a large law firm that does work for the government and other large corporations.
    3. Bank of America says "Hey, Justice Dept, what should we do about this Wikileaks thing?"
    4. Justice Dept. says "Go hire Hunton and Williams, they're good."
    5. Hunton and Williams hires HBGary Federal as a subcontractor to help with this problem.
    6. HBGary makes some PowerPoints containing a bunch of ideas about making fake friend profiles and discrediting people and etc. to pitch to...somebody.

    At this point, Anonymous hacks HBGary Federal. They are not doing this to expose corruption, they are doing it to get man-child revenge on Aaron Barr. Ironically, Aaron Barr is basically a twist on your typical Anonymous member, except instead of going after lulz or some imagined political cause, he is trying to sell his hacker fantasies for money to whoever's buying: government, big companies, whatever.

    So, if there is any corruption to expose, they did it BY ACCIDENT while actually just trying to fuck with a guy who was fucking with them. However, what I see is HBGary Federal attempting to pitch its CEO's hacker fantasies to BofA. We don't know if the pitch was ever given. We don't know to whom it was given. We don't know if BofA went "what the fuck, guys, you can't do that!" Any involvement of the government seems to be a referral to a gigantic D.C. law firm.

    Again, maybe I've missed some critical revelation, so feel free to correct me here.

    EDIT:

    See, the reporting on this is so crappy that it's easy to get confused. Aaron Barr, who stepped down, works for HBGary Federal, which is a separate company from HBGary. HBGary is, if I recall right, the majority owner of HBGary Federal. The guy and his wife are Greg Hoglund and Penny Leavy, who run HBGary (not HBGary Federal) and who have not stepped down.