Met Police arrest five in Anonymous DDoS attacks probe

Filed Under: Denial of Service, Law & order, Malware

Metropolitan police badgeIt was pretty chilly here in Britain this morning at 7am, and I for one was pleased not to wake up to find members of the Metropolitan Police Service's Central e-Crime Unit dragging me out of bed.

But that's what happened to five people, arrested today in connection with offences under the Computer Misuse Act 1990.

The five males, aged between 15 and 26 years old, were arrested at their homes in a co-ordinated operation in the West Midlands, Northants, Herts, Surrey and London according to a press release issued by the police.

According to the computer crime cops, the arrests are in connection with the distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks organised by the loosely-knit "Anonymous" group.

Regular readers of Naked Security know that "Anonymous" have made the headlines recently for launching attacks against websites of organisations and governments who they felt were anti-WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange, or who they felt had tried to censor freedom of speech.

We've warned on this site that taking part in a denial-of-service attack is illegal in many countries, and that the LOIC tool being distributed to volunteers was not adequate camouflage for anyone wanting to hide their participation.

Clearly the authorities are not looking sympathetically on those they believe are assisting the denial-of-service attacks. And that's not just true in the UK. For instance, in Holland we have now seen two arrests in connection with the attacks.

Clearly computer users should think very carefully before being recruited as a hacktivist to launch attacks on websites belonging to other people - otherwise it could be that the police are knocking on your door next.

There's some further background on the latest arrests in this report from The Register.

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6 Responses to Met Police arrest five in Anonymous DDoS attacks probe

  1. Jessica · 1311 days ago

    Do you know what happened to the dutch guys?

    Cheers,
    Jessica

  2. guachinton · 1311 days ago

    If in other parts of the world people are taken higher risks fighting for freedom os speech, freedom of information, freedom of expressión, FREEDOM at last, it is not so bad being caught by western police. It´s an honour and the victims are our HEROS.

  3. Denny · 1310 days ago

    Yes, gotta love guachinton's idea of freedom of information. Instead of the government deciding which websites you can have, Anonymous do it for us! I, for one, welcome our new pimply faced adolescent overlords.

  4. Bob · 1310 days ago

    Any arrests been made of those who attacked the wikileaks web site?

    And what measures have been taken to trace all those who have advocated the death of Julian Assange ? As the home office seems to think it's OK to (try to) prevent entry to the UK of people who have anti-islam views, I would hope anyone who promotes murder would also be prevented from entering the UK (That should include many US politicians)

  5. Gibbo · 1309 days ago

    Bob , I dont think the "pimply faced adolescent overlords" have filed a complaint with a supporting statement or evidence of who "attacked" the wikileaks site...

    Sure they may rant on the internet about it , but I am not aware of any of the "ANON" lot attending the local police to file a complaint ?

  6. Quest · 1285 days ago

    Their name is, Anonymous

    In relation to this, accordling, in the australian/new zealand gaming community we have been receiving DDOS attacks to two of the major websites which run the community. We are currently trying to stop it but our efforts are failing. We are being destroyed each day as more and more ddos attacks occur on ingame servers(dedicated servers which people are connecting to and playing on), websites, webhosts and probably a lot more that people have not noticed yet.

    The websites are (which are down or unconnectable due to DDOS) http://www.cybergamer.com.au http://www.gotgames.com.au

    We received two youtube videos following up the DDOS attacks which became more frequent untill it was everyday, all the time.

    These videos can be found here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4W24vDUT9b4 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pGgHu_uC5V4

    We received these videos 1 month ago and, well, you know the rest...

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About the author

Graham Cluley runs his own award-winning computer security blog, and is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and gives computer security presentations. Send Graham an email, subscribe to his updates on Facebook, follow him on Twitter and App.net, and circle him on Google Plus for regular updates.