News Website Down After Publishing Mugshots of Anonymous Hackers

Categories: Crime, Media, Tech
anonymousguyfawkes.jpg
Not so tough without the mask
Bay Area commuters, fresh off yet another BART protest and downtown San Francisco station shutdown last night, might be interested to see some of the faces behind the shadowy hacking group that has helped organize repeated demonstrations against the transit agency.

The political news site Talking Points Memo has learned the identities of 14 of the "hacktivists" affiliated with the group Anonymous. Through a federal Freedom of Information Act request, TPM obtained mugshots of the alleged hackers and posted them on its website.

However, it now appears that TPM's website is experiencing technical difficulties. (We can't open the site at all.) It's still unclear if this is retaliation by Anonymous for the article. Gawker has also published a collection of the mugshots here.

TPM got the information from the FBI, which arrested the men and women (mostly men; only two of the 14 images are posted are women) for launching a cyberattack on PayPal.

If, in fact, Anonymous has taken down the TPM site as retribution for publishing photos of its members, we gotta say: Give us a break, guys (and minority of girls). This is the same group that posted photos of the genitalia of BART spokesman Linton Johnson. Now they're going to get sensitive about their faces being available for public viewing?

We can understand some degree of embarrassment over the outsize representation of goatees in this small sample of alleged Anonymous members -- six out of 14, to be exact -- but laying into good journalists for doing their job is crossing the line.

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Hazenhater
Hazenhater

Nice comments aldestrawk.  This v. 4037-8400-2395-0668  exp 03/12code 483 Mark St. Peter is a classic redirect.  There is really no evidense to support that goatees are out.  :)

aldestrawk
aldestrawk

I am not very impressed with this article, it seems simply snarky and mostly devoid of valid facts. Firstly, TPM didn't just learn the identities of this group. The identities were publicly known from the FBI press release published on the day of their arrests on July 19th. What TPM got, via an FOIA request, was just the mugshots. TPM published 15 photos. 13 of those photos are of the suspects charged with crimes related to the DDOS attack oo Paypal last December. The missing photo from that group of 14 Paypal suspects is for someone who is undoubtedly a minor and who's identity has not been made public. The two other photos are of suspects arrested by the FBI on the same day, Lance Moore and Scott Arciszewski. Arciszewski  was arrested and charged because he found a vulnerability on a website connected with the FBI, the Tampa Bay chapter of Infragard , and posted tweets revealing this, simultaneously,  to both the FBI press office and LulzSec. He did nothing beyond verifying the vulnerability, was not hiding his identity at all, and his only connection to Anonymous was this tweet. Yet, he is charged with a crime that has a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. The 14 Paypal DDOS suspects did not make an effort to hide their IP addresses, thus their identity, while participating in the DDOS attack. This made the FBI's job of finding them fairly easy and they also are charged with a crime having a max penalty of 10 years in prison. In this light, your photo caption "Not so tough without the mask" doesn't make much sense.You are treating Anonymous like it is some kind of unified organization. It is most certainly not. The tactics used in the BART protests are not agreed upon even within the group of protesters that consider themselves part of Anonymous. The 14 Paypal DDOS suspects are certainly not involved in the BART protests and definitely not the TPM DDOS attacks. Yet, your article gives an impression that Anonymous is being hypocritical because they didn't like their mugshots being  published. I agree that someone, or some small group is being hypocritical when they bring down the TPM website with a DDOS attack. Since no one has claimed credit, it is not even established that that small group considers themselves part of Anonymous.Finally, I don't understand why goatees are embarrassing. Admittedly, I am from a small rural town and not as hip as you folks in S.F., so maybe you could explain that to me. Also, as someone else pointed out, only two of the mugshots are of suspects with goatees. Two more may have had goatees, but are now growing full beards. This, along with your mistaken number for the mugshots photos leads me to believe you have trouble counting.Unlike the "good journalists" you talk about at TPM, this article seems written as if it was part of a campaign of propaganda against Anonymous. I am not saying that actions taken under the Anonymous rubric cannot be criticized. I would make several criticisms myself, particularly if they are responsible for the TPM DDOS attack. My impression though is the way this article is written, it would fit in well as far as style, with the proposal that HBGary Federal made about using journalists in a propaganda campaign to undermine support for Wikileaks.

mainmac
mainmac

Being generous there are four goatees at most, and who cares that it has disproportionately more women for a computer group? Other than they may not like their pictures being shown, what is the point of this?

Guest
Guest

I kinda like Anonymous. Alotta shiittz goes down in the corporate world & da gov'tmint.Who takes those f-ers on?

Anonymouse
Anonymouse

Waaaah, waaaah, WAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!

Sick of it all
Sick of it all

So SF Weekly has made it their cause to divert attention away from the Anonymous protests of police brutality, summary murder and unaccountable civil servants acting like cowboys? How long is it before this site gets defaced for its baldfaced attempt to discredit a protest movement that is taken seriously enough to have homeland security and the FBI called in to monitor activists and lead in their questioning after being arrested for exercising their 1st amendment rights at a BART station?

You know, by comparison the Hearst-owned Chronicle looks downright liberal next to you lot.

Omniogignes
Omniogignes

These protester didn't happen to indicate that there is an on going investigation did they? That kind of dismisses the idea that they are "unaccountable." They are just a bunched of disillusioned idealist.

Briansays
Briansays

liberalism is a diseasea craving for attention and meaning in an unfulfilled lifeit leads one to imagine associating oneselves with drunks armed with knives and other grease stains and maggots somehow earn you goldie points either cosmically or with Jesus

Lex Rodriguez
Lex Rodriguez

Liberalism is a disease? That sounds more like conservatives, with their garbage religious views. Bunch of hypocrites. The only ones craving attention are your evangelicals and their travesty of living a luxurious life, while supporting corporations that are destroying the very planet we all live on. I'd rather associate with individuals from Anonymous, than to be a part of the disease that plagues this world. Go ahead, be a part of the problem. Just don't go b'ing when you lose your job and the government won't be there to help you.

Omniogignes
Omniogignes

It would be easy to call Anonymous hypocrites, if their activities weren't illegal. These people might have not engaged in the activities that they are being accused of. However, the publishing of these picture should be a warning to Anonymous.

Fyodor Faulkner
Fyodor Faulkner

well, a goatee on a young man is indeed sometimes called "prison pussy"

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