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Hackers From Anonymous Say They Are Attacking NSA Computers

Keith Alexander checks his AOL account in the morning.
Keith Alexander checks his AOL account in the morning.
bandarij via Flickr

Someone behind a Twitter account at @Op_NSA has been tweeting that he/she and partners are breaking into National Security Administration computer servers, accessing data, collecting agency email addresses, and trying to crack passwords.

In recent days, the account declared "#FuckPRISM" and linked to some data that supposedly proved their hack, like lists of email addresses and data regarding "DNS tunnels that are sending encrypted data to and from the PRISM databases." It released what it said was the home address and personal email address of the NSA director.

Are these hackers all bluster? Or could they truly be disruptive?

(Could Keith Alexander really live in a house worth just $169,000 and use AOL email address schatzie08@aol.com? That's cute! When another Twitter user called them hooligans for releasing this, @op_NSA said "Yeah we are really big meanie-heads. How DARE someone look into his personal life! ... oh wait. He did that to us." Touche.)

The Twitter account promised that there would be a major announcement at 2300 hours yesterday, July 11. That has since been postponed. But in the meantime, someone who goes by the name @luminary agreed to answer a few questions by email.

Asked what they are trying to accomplish and why, what they have planned next, and whether they have gotten any blowback from law enforcement, this is what s/he said:

We were rooting around in NSA servers at the hands of two specific Anons. We did release a small sample of cracked passwords and had intentions to release more. However, these two anons were raided by police on apparently unrelated charges only a few days ago and since then we have not heard from them. We may have access to some of this data still, but as of now, we're focusing on something else. As much as we'd like for that data to come out once organized, there's very sadly nothing we can do unless they're back.

The plan was to DDoS Verizon and NSA tonight at 2300 hours GMT, but we are still organizing our fire power and getting certain people on board. While we could very likely still take down both targets today, we want to make sure that everything is in place and that the full effect is achieved. We'll be alerting some media outlets just before the attacks and putting out tweets about these attacks as they go down. In all likelihood, the effect achieved will be similar to that which was seen during Operation Payback in late 2010.

Currently we have a large number of people very dedicated to this cause. Each of them is very interested in gathering information about our targets. A smaller number of our anons are working to organize the shadier and more high profile attacks. Our IRC channels usually vary between 70 or 90 people depending on the time of day. We are working under the banner of Anonymous, as evident by our twitter and our posts/press releases and videos. We can't speak on behalf of other groups because we're not aware of the full extent to which others may be participating, so in that regard, we'll continue speaking for Anonymous.

The public manner with which we've conducted ourselves, we believe, is important in order to spread the word and be as effective as we'd like to be.

We are trying to accomplish the propagation of a specific message: We don't put up with the NSA. First and foremost. We don't trust, respect, like or support the NSA and their actions. Spying on the world is a HIGHLY deceptive act that *must* be met with appropriate ramifications. In layman's terms, consequences will never be the same.

As for the blowback, so far we have no proof of any Anons being arrested or attacked for this particular op. As previously explained, two were arrested on apparently unrelated charges and many in our operations have expressed concern for those parties. We're certainly more than willing to do interviews (even on voice) with the media once we get our publicized attacks organized just the way we want them. It's a fine-tuning game. We don't want to hit small with a lot of noise on time. We want to hit when we're ready, hit big and then make a lot of noise as a result.

-Anonymous Luminary @aluminary.

@Op_NSa is now alluding to a "secret mystery project" and calling this weekend "the leak-end."




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