'Meltdown Monday' Anonymous hackers leak military mails

AntiSec hacktivists blasted for breaking own manifesto


Anonymous uploaded 90,000 military email address and associated password hashes onto a file-sharing network on Monday as part of an operation it christening Military Meltdown Monday.

The sensitive data came from a hack against military contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, which Anonymous hinted had yielded further sensitive information. The loosely knit hacktivist collective claims to have pulled the information from an unprotected server.

As a result, email addresses on the list are at a greater risk at being at the targeted end of malware attacks, at least. It's a fair bet that many of the passwords used will have been less than super-secure and therefore open to brute-force dictionary-based attacks against the exposed accounts. Other data obtained, but not released, might be used to mount other attacks, security watchers warn.

"Anonymous claims to have erased four gigabytes worth of source code and to have discovered information which could help them attack US government and other contractors' systems," Chester Wisniewski of net security firm Sophos notes in a blog post on the hack.

Booz Allen Hamilton declined to comment on the incident, AFP reports.

The reported hack against Booz Allen Hamilton and an earlier hit against government contractor IRC Federal are part of the umbrella AntiSec movement, which aims to expose the poor security of government agencies and big corporates. This point, such as it is, has been made long ago with attacks on Sony, HBGary and others, so at this point in the game the attacks needlessly expose military personnel, Arizona police officers or gamers to greater risk of internet attack.

Rik Ferguson, a security consultant at Trend Micro, said that the AntiSec banner is being used as a flag of convenience for all sorts of mischief by people who are seemingly unfamiliar with the origin of the term. He writes:

In the ultimate irony, the original AntiSec manifesto from back in 2001 was all about the irresponsibility of full disclosure. That same manifesto was re-posted when Imageshack was compromised eight years later. The manifesto criticised the 'security industry' for using full-disclosure to develop 'scare tactics' to convince people into by security. Are you listening, Operation AntiSec?

Find the flaws, publish your successes if you must, but have the decency to spare the innocent victims of your activities. Obscure personal data before you publish; otherwise you are considerably worse than those you are attempting to shame.

Which seems to sum it up. ®


Other stories you might like

  • 5G C-band rollout at US airports slowed over radio altimeter safety fears
    Well, they did say from July, now they really mean from July 2023

    America's aviation watchdog has said the rollout of 5G C-band coverage near US airports won't fully start until next year, delaying some travelers' access to better cellular broadband at crowded terminals.

    Acting FAA Administrator Billy Nolen said in a statement this month that its discussions with wireless carriers "have identified a path that will continue to enable aviation and 5G C-band wireless to safely co-exist."

    5G C-band operates between 3.7-3.98GHz, near the 4.2-4.4GHz band used by radio altimeters that are jolly useful for landing planes in limited visibility. There is or was a fear that these cellular signals, such as from cell towers close to airports, could bleed into the frequencies used by aircraft and cause radio altimeters to display an incorrect reading. C-band technology, which promises faster mobile broadband, was supposed to roll out nationwide on Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile US's networks, but some deployments have been paused near airports due to these concerns. 

    Continue reading
  • IBM settles age discrimination case that sought top execs' emails
    Just days after being ordered to provide messages, Big Blue opts out of public trial

    Less than a week after IBM was ordered in an age discrimination lawsuit to produce internal emails in which its former CEO and former SVP of human resources discuss reducing the number of older workers, the IT giant chose to settle the case for an undisclosed sum rather than proceed to trial next month.

    The order, issued on June 9, in Schenfeld v. IBM, describes Exhibit 10, which "contains emails that discuss the effort taken by IBM to increase the number of 'millennial' employees."

    Plaintiff Eugene Schenfeld, who worked as an IBM research scientist when current CEO Arvind Krishna ran IBM's research group, sued IBM for age discrimination in November, 2018. His claim is one of many that followed a March 2018 report by ProPublica and Mother Jones about a concerted effort to de-age IBM and a 2020 finding by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that IBM executives had directed managers to get rid of older workers to make room for younger ones.

    Continue reading
  • FTC urged to probe Apple, Google for enabling ‘intense system of surveillance’
    Ad tracking poses a privacy and security risk in post-Roe America, lawmakers warn

    Democrat lawmakers want the FTC to investigate Apple and Google's online ad trackers, which they say amount to unfair and deceptive business practices and pose a privacy and security risk to people using the tech giants' mobile devices.

    US Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Cory Booker (D-NJ) and House Representative Sara Jacobs (D-CA) requested on Friday that the watchdog launch a probe into Apple and Google, hours before the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, clearing the way for individual states to ban access to abortions. 

    In the days leading up to the court's action, some of these same lawmakers had also introduced data privacy bills, including a proposal that would make it illegal for data brokers to sell sensitive location and health information of individuals' medical treatment.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022