FBI issue 40 warrants over Anonymous attacks
The FBI has issued 40 search warrants in its hunt to find those who took part in the Anonymous denial-of-service attacks.
The warrants followed five arrests in the UK yesterday, also for taking part in the attacks against companies such as Visa and PayPal that refused to work with WikiLeaks.
The victims included major US companies across several industries
“A group calling itself ‘Anonymous’ has claimed responsibility for the attacks, saying they conducted them in protest of the companies’ and organisations’ actions,” the FBI said. “The victims included major US companies across several industries.”
The FBI didn’t say if any arrests had yet been made, or release any information about who the warrants were issued for. The UK arrests picked up five men, aged 15 to 26.
A San Francisco newspaper reported that FBI agents used a search warrant to confiscate computers from a local man’s home, but didn’t arrest him.
“They’re either doing this to a whole bunch of people today, or they’re really far off in thinking that I’m a valuable target,” the man told the San Francisco Chronicle.
The FBI took the opportunity to remind Americans that DDOS attacks are against US law. “The FBI also is reminding the public that facilitating or conducting a DDoS attack is illegal, punishable by up to ten years in prison, as well as exposing participants to significant civil liability.”
It also claimed that security vendors had found ways to block the tool Anonymous typically uses to run its DDOS attacks. “Major internet security (anti-virus) software providers have instituted updates so they will detect the so-called ‘Low Orbit Ion Canon’ tools used in these attacks.”
Security experts have repeatedly noted that LOIC doesn’t protect the identity of the user.
Dutch, German and French authorities had also taken “enforcement action”, the statement added.