Cyber assaults ‘slow traffic’ as miscreants slurp email logins
By Jasper Hamill
Posted in Security, 12th November 2013 16:03 GMT
Anonymous hacktivists have claimed they used laptops to launch cyber attacks against the British government whilst attending a protest in Parliament Square last week, The Register has learned.
The group claimed that over 1,000 masked protesters had gathered in the centre of London last week as part of a worldwide event called the Million Mask March.
But even as the street activists waved banners and banged bongos, a group of hackers said they stood in Parliament Square and attacked the seat of British Parliamentary democracy – using its own Wi-Fi network.
Anonymous hacktivists found the Wi-Fi password by looking at a publicly available website set up during a parliamentary conference. The Register has verified the password is available on the conference website but won’t be linking to the password details, for obvious reasons.
An Anonymous member told us: “This was an easy takeover with a wide range, because most of the credentials were given up online. We took over many pig-bought, taxpayer-iPads [sic] and many machines, including Dell computers.
“It was like taking candy from a baby. Many of the machines were unsecured, with default security options. Our Eastern European brothers also attacked the Parliament website, causing slowness all day.”
Once inside Parliament’s Wi-Fi, the hacktivists said they used Westminster’s own Wi-Fi network to access email servers and were able to download the log-in details of an undisclosed number of users. They also launched a DDoS attack aimed at Parliament.
However, our Anonymous source was keen to stress that the attack was simply aimed at highlighting Parliament’s poor security.
“This is not malicious, it is for lulzcats. People in glass houses should secure themselves better. What if we were bad people? They should know [about the poor security].”
Although we could not confirm Anonymous’ claims that it hacked MPs’ fondleslabs, a government spin doctor confirmed that Parliament had experienced higher levels of traffic than usual during the protests.
“We did experience heavier than usual traffic to our internet site on 5th Nov but our defences were appropriate and the Parliamentary internet site remained available. Neither our secure Parliamentary network nor applications were penetrated by unauthorised users.
“For obvious reasons Parliament does not comment on the measures we take to ensure the security of our network.” ®