After extensively covering Anonymous’ attack on Sony, PlayStation LifeStyle’s news was heavily referenced across the internet by other gaming sites, but they weren’t the only ones to take interest in our articles. Anonymous had noticed, and they wanted to talk.
After waking this morning, I checked Anonymous’ IRC, a secure chat system used by the group to co-ordinate their attacks, after scrolling down a few pages I noticed something – Anonymous were looking for me. User Takai stated on SonyRecon’s IRC “Find me Sebastian Moss… Wanna talk to him”. Subsequently, other members replied “There’s his twitter dude, I can get his email if you want… Moss is a member of GamesPress.com – his details will be easy enough to find.” Anonymous were closing in: “okay Mr Moss lives in central london” continuing “hey sebastain if your here wanna just go ahead and give us your phone number?… cause we’re going to find it”.
Dubbed by some as “giant killers”, its generally not seen as a good idea to incur the wrath of Anonymous, who were able to not only bring Sony down, but governments, Mastercard and US security firm HB Gary. However, while Anonymous has few rules, they do have a very strict one against attacking the press – as supporters of free speech, they must allow journalists to write what they want, even if they don’t like what is written. Takai told the members of the chat ” He is NOT a target”, repeating that I should not be intimidated or threatened.
Checking my Twitter, I had received a message: “Join our IRC #SonyRecon under the username BoltMoss72. Anon has a statement to make”. Anonymous has no formal leader, and instead any member can contribute to the group and suggest actions or make statements, but the SonyRecon IRC was almost unanimous – they had something to say to me.
I joined the chat soon after, still slightly nervous, updating my anti-virus software in a futile attempt to feel more secure. Takai immediately replied to my message, setting up a private chat room to talk. After looking at the IRC chat logs it was clear that Takai, while not a leader, did have a disproportionately high input in the chat, and the group’s actions. I asked Takai if he (gender assumed) would classify himself as “a current driving force behind SonyRecon” and he agreed, but later was careful to clarify that he had “not actually admitted to what [his] particular role in the operation is”, and light-heartedly that “perhaps [he is] merely a cheer leader”.
Takai believed that the FBI, along with Sony and Prolexic were watching the main group’s chat (but not our private conversation), so he chose his words carefully, ensuring he never technically admitted to any wrong doing. However, he said that he did not fear Sony coming after him, and that “they have bigger things to worry about than I”. He also joked that about the FBI watching them: “They’re names in a list. If they want to hang out and chat, by all means. Maybe they can help ddos!.. I hear the government has a fast connection or two ;)”
Hired by Sony, Prolexic are a company that specialises in defeating DDoS attacks – the kind currently used by Anonymous to bring down Sony. A powerful opponent, Prolexic have mostly managed to keep Anonymous at bay. Takai, however, seemed relaxed about the company’s defenses – “It was expected. We knew sooner or later Sony would enlist outside help”. Pressed on whether Anonymous would take out Prolexic, Takai showed confidence in the ‘hacktavist’s’ upcoming retaliation, stating “well, if I had to put money on it … I’d say, Prolexic is going down like a two dollar wh*** in a Nevada chicken ranch ;)”. He did admit that the company “is quite formidable” and congratulated “them for doing so well”, but again he warned “We do however have ways for dealing with the ‘Prolexic’ factor”. Hoping to not ruin the “big surprises” planned for Sony, he would not go into detail on what these ways were, refusing to comment on whether the site would be defaced – something that was considered in the main IRC.
So far, all Sony has seen from us is poking and prodding. A simple salute to let them know, we’re coming. Make no mistake, what you saw today and thought to be frustration is merely preparation for what’s to come.
We said, expect us. Counting us out, would be a mistake. 😉
For the sake of not shooting ourselves in the foot, I won’t comment on specific operational tactics we may or may not employ here. I will however say, that if Sony thinks LOIC is the only trick in our hat … they’re in for a hell of a wake up call. We’re really going all out for this one.
There are many different faces to the operation. Something we encourage is creative thinking.
He also confirmed that this belief was shared by many others: “My belief and that of all those you see here and many many more is that Anonymous is not done with Sony”. And it’s true, the IRC is filled with anonymous Anons planning a big attack, but due to my presence, the discussions on actual plans are kept off the main lines. Takai also stated that the fight could last for a long time: “We’ve known all along this war would not be won in a day. We’re here for the long haul though.” Continue reading…