Anti-piracy lawyers' email database leaked after hack

Backup torrented


Hackers have uploaded a leaked database of emails from anti-piracy law firm ACS:Law onto P2P networks and websites.

ACS:Law was among a handful of entertainment industry-affiliated organisations to endure denial of service attacks by the denizens of 4Chan last week. A loose-knit collective of members of the notorious message board also hit the MPAA, RIAA and BPI using online attack tools, taking the MPAA and RIAA offline in the process.

Other targets of Operation: Payback is a bitch included solicitors ACS:Law and Davenport Lyons. During attempts to re-establish ACS:Law's website it seems a compressed copy of what seems to be at least part of the firm's email database, contained in site backups, was exposed online. Hackers extracted this webmail file and made it available via torrent trackers and posted it on a limited number of websites over the weekend.

“Their site came back online [after the DDoS attack] – and on their front page was accidentally a backup file of the whole website (default directory listing, their site was empty), including emails and passwords,” a leader of the attacking group told TorrentFreak.

Information contained in the email database reportedly includes personal details of the targets of the law firm's threatening letters and business correspondence with ACS:Law's partners. These email nuggets are buried among spam and office admin exchanges in a 350MB file. Slyck reports that the file contains around a month of webmails belonging to solicitor Andrew Crossley, head of ACS:Law.

UK-based ACS:Law has enraged the more freewheeling sections of the internet by threatening lawsuits against alleged P2P copyright infringers unless they agree to an out-of-court settlement, typically of £500. The files involved are often video games or pornographic flicks, with copyrights held by German monitoring firm Digiprotect. ACS:Law is under investigation over its tactics by the Solicitor's Regulatory Authority, with a tribunal expected next year.

Privacy International said on Monday that it plans to sue ACS:Law for violating the privacy of internet users over the security breach. It reckons the names and personal details of targets of ACS:law's legal nastygrams could become the target of scams or identity theft as a result of the email leak. The privacy activists are also briefing the Information Commissioner's Office on the breach. ®

Similar topics

Broader topics


Other stories you might like

  • Talos names eight deadly sins in widely used industrial software
    Entire swaths of gear relies on vulnerability-laden Open Automation Software (OAS)

    A researcher at Cisco's Talos threat intelligence team found eight vulnerabilities in the Open Automation Software (OAS) platform that, if exploited, could enable a bad actor to access a device and run code on a targeted system.

    The OAS platform is widely used by a range of industrial enterprises, essentially facilitating the transfer of data within an IT environment between hardware and software and playing a central role in organizations' industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) efforts. It touches a range of devices, including PLCs and OPCs and IoT devices, as well as custom applications and APIs, databases and edge systems.

    Companies like Volvo, General Dynamics, JBT Aerotech and wind-turbine maker AES are among the users of the OAS platform.

    Continue reading
  • Despite global uncertainty, $500m hit doesn't rattle Nvidia execs
    CEO acknowledges impact of war, pandemic but says fundamentals ‘are really good’

    Nvidia is expecting a $500 million hit to its global datacenter and consumer business in the second quarter due to COVID lockdowns in China and Russia's invasion of Ukraine. Despite those and other macroeconomic concerns, executives are still optimistic about future prospects.

    "The full impact and duration of the war in Ukraine and COVID lockdowns in China is difficult to predict. However, the impact of our technology and our market opportunities remain unchanged," said Jensen Huang, Nvidia's CEO and co-founder, during the company's first-quarter earnings call.

    Those two statements might sound a little contradictory, including to some investors, particularly following the stock selloff yesterday after concerns over Russia and China prompted Nvidia to issue lower-than-expected guidance for second-quarter revenue.

    Continue reading
  • Another AI supercomputer from HPE: Champollion lands in France
    That's the second in a week following similar system in Munich also aimed at researchers

    HPE is lifting the lid on a new AI supercomputer – the second this week – aimed at building and training larger machine learning models to underpin research.

    Based at HPE's Center of Excellence in Grenoble, France, the new supercomputer is to be named Champollion after the French scholar who made advances in deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphs in the 19th century. It was built in partnership with Nvidia using AMD-based Apollo computer nodes fitted with Nvidia's A100 GPUs.

    Champollion brings together HPC and purpose-built AI technologies to train machine learning models at scale and unlock results faster, HPE said. HPE already provides HPC and AI resources from its Grenoble facilities for customers, and the broader research community to access, and said it plans to provide access to Champollion for scientists and engineers globally to accelerate testing of their AI models and research.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022