A conference call between FBI and British police has been recorded by the people they were trying to catch.
HACKERS have targeted the websites of several law enforcement agencies worldwide in attacks attributed to Anonymous, allegedly accessing details of informants and eavesdropping on a conference call between the FBI and Scotland Yard on how to stop them.
Anonymous has published a recording of the phone call, gloating in a Twitter message that “the FBI might be curious how we’re able to continuously read their internal comms for some time now”.
Amid the material published was an email purportedly sent by an FBI agent to international law enforcement agencies. It invites his foreign counterparts to join the call to “discuss the ongoing investigations related to Anonymous … and other associated splinter groups” on January 17 at 4pm.
The message – addressed to law enforcement officials in the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden and France – contained a phone number and password for accessing the call.
A law enforcement official, speaking on condition of anonymity because the matter is under investigation, said that authorities were looking at the possibility that the message was intercepted after a private email account of one of the invited participants was compromised.
Graham Cluley, an expert with data security company Sophos, said that knowing the time, telephone number and passcode for the call meant it was all too easy to spy on the investigators. ”Even my ironing lady could have rung in and silently listened to the call just like Anonymous did,” he said, calling the fiasco “highly embarrassing for the cops”.
The FBI said the information “was intended for law enforcement officers only and was illegally obtained” but that no FBI systems were breached. It added that “a criminal investigation is under way to identify and hold accountable those responsible.”
The group also claimed responsibility for an attack on the website of a Virginia law firm for a US Marine convicted in a deadly 2005 attack in Iraq. Puckett and Faraj served as the lead defense lawyer for Staff Sergeant Frank Wuterich, who faced a US military court martial last month in connection with the killings in Haditha.
in a statement which appeared on the website of the law firm, Anonymous also claimed to have published three gigabytes of private email messages of attorneys Neal Puckett and Haytham Faraj.
“The contents of these email messages include detailed records, transcripts, testimony, trial evidence, and legal defence donation records pertaining to not only Frank Wuterich but also many other marines they have represented,” Anonymous said.
Informants details seen
Police say hackers in Salt Lake City, Utah, gained access to sensitive data, including citizen complaints about drug crimes, including phone numbers, addresses and other personal information.
“We’re still knee deep in trying to get a feel for the extent of the problem,” Salt Lake City police Detective Dennis McGowan said.
In Greece, the Justice Ministry took down its site after a video by activists claiming to be Greek and Cypriot members of Anonymous was displayed for at least two hours.
In Boston, a message posted on the police website said, “Anonymous hacks Boston Police website in retaliation for police brutality at OWS,” apparently a reference to the Occupy Wall Street movement.
The message said that the site had been attacked several months ago and that hundreds of passwords were released in retaliation for what they called brutality against Occupy Boston. A police spokesman would not confirm Anonymous was responsible.
In October, Boston police acknowledged that various websites used by members of the police department – including the website belonging to the police patrolmen’s association – had been hacked and possibly compromised. The department said it had asked all department personnel to change their passwords on the police department’s network.
“They clearly ignored our warnings,” the message on the department’s website said. ”So you get your kicks beating protesters? “That’s OK; we get kicks defacing … your websites – again.”