Internal battle rips through Anonymous
Anonymous has warned its members to steer clear of some of the hacking group’s online hangouts to avoid getting caught up in an internal leadership battle.
The hacker group, which has shown support for online causes including WikiLeaks, has conventionally featured a loosely distributed leadership, but is in the midst of a “coup d’etat”, according to posts on one of the group’s websites.
“We regret to inform you today that our network has been compromised by a former IRC-operator and fellow helper named ‘Ryan’,” Anonymous reported on its AnonOps.in message board.
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“He decided that he didn’t like the leaderless command structure that AnonOps Network Admins use. So he organised a coup d’etat,” the post said.
According to the hackers, Ryan used a bot to harvest IP addresses and passwords of all the network servers and then targeted them with denial-of-service attacks.
At the time of the announcement, Anonymous said the rogue element within the group had taken control of several sites used by the hacker network, which has recently denied involvement in the Sony data breach.
“We would strongly advise all users to stay away from AnonOps.net and AnonOps.ru and they should be considered compromised,” the posting from “The Old AnonOps netstaff” said. “Using or connecting to any service on those addresses may put your computer, and by extension your person, at risk.”