Spanish police arrest Anonymous hacking suspects

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

Spanish police have arrested three men, suspected of being members of the notorious Anonymous online protest group.

The men, whose names have not been made public, were detained in Alicante, Almeria and Barcelona.

Spanish police press conference

Spain's Technological Investigation Brigade (BIT), the police unit who conducted the investigation, have held a live TV press conference about the arrests. According to BIT the men operated a cell of Anonymous, directing internet attacks against the likes of the Sony PlayStation store, and websites belonging to the governments of Egypt, Chile, Iran, Colombia, Algeria and Libya.

Fascinatingly, the authorities posted images on Twitter of IRC logs that appeared to show plans to attack Spanish police websites and the electoral board with a distributed denial-of-service attack.

Spanish police evidence

Spanish police are also said to have seized a server hosted in the city of Gijon. No doubt the authorities are hoping that that may yield clues which will help reveal the identities of other Anonymous activists.

The Spanish computer crime cops should be congratulated for their investigation into the more malicious activities of Anonymous.

If nothing else, these arrests may encourage others to think twice before participating in distributed denial-of-service attacks against websites and online organisations - an activity which some forget is against the law.

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18 Responses to Spanish police arrest Anonymous hacking suspects

  1. Authorities all over the world are under pressure to identify and detain the Anonymous/LolzSec hackers. Lets just hope that they get the right ones and not the ones that the hackers set up to fall.

  2. hurf · 1541 days ago


  3. Imfeelinglikethis · 1541 days ago

    What is going to become interesting with this type of thing is that various state agencies are creating "Cyber Assault Toolkits" which are in reality DDOS tools. When will it become legal for the state to create a DDOS attack and not for the citizens?

  4. Mich071 · 1541 days ago

    The police aren't creating DDOS (denial of service attacks) they are actually trace routing the criminals.

  5. "The Watcher" · 1541 days ago

    I work as a 'cyber cop' by profession. I find it very interesting that folks seem to think this sort of behavior should not be prosecuted, and that those who are committing these crimes think they won't be caught. While it isn't easy to track them down it is eventually inevitable. there are no invisble footsteps. Everyone slips up. My hat is off bigtime to this task force. I applaude them for their efforts and I hope they have the right guys too. It is my experience that the bigger fish are very elusive and much harder to catch, but the eventuality is they will be caught. TIme is against them and places to hide will wane. It is harder to run forever than to pursue.

    • Anonymous · 1473 days ago

      Sorry, but what you just said made me laugh. It's pretty obvious what potential Anonymous has as a whole. Trying to silence them will be quite an interesting thing to watch. You may catch some of them, but where there have been 3 found, 6 more will take their place. Good luck.

  6. "The Watcher" · 1541 days ago

    It is also saddening to know that we are under new threats daily and that those who are becoming charged with 'policing' the internet have to resort to the ["Cyber Assault Toolkits" which are in reality DDOS tools.] as I'mFeelingLikeThis posted, as well as many other unsavory tactics. Keeping the seedy and criminally minded elements of technology from intruding on the innocent and unsuspecting is sadly becoming a highly necessary evil, as well. It also has far reaching effects on us all because of their unethical and illegal actions. Unfortunately they leave us little option but to fight fire with even bigger fire ... and so it will escalate.

  7. "The Watcher" · 1541 days ago

    How sad it is that the average Jo's & Janes of the world who (like me) just want to enjoy the technonlogy for what it is to them, honestly and privately, but now shudder and have to fear losing their ID's and personal/financial/sensitive information to these cyber bullies and terrorists. Not to mention those who pursue honorable business ventures only to become victims to cyber villians. It hurts all who have honor and integrity in their pursuits and actions.

    I truly believe in the end, that justice will prevail, as there guys in this article are about to find out so bad guys and gal ... beware. Your day of reconing is coming. We are watching you.

    • Anonymous · 1473 days ago

      You are watching, eh? Just as hard as you're watching your own grammar? "Cyber villains", or "Cyber bullies" is what people like you who work for corporate government call people who decide to show that they have the power to do exactly what the government does.

      The fact of the matter is, with or without this "Cyber bully" group, your financial information, ID, or anything else you find personal is never safe no matter which way you look at it. There is no privacy, only the facade that the government lets us believe. You're a pretty smug fellow for thinking that you can bring a group like this to what you call, "Justice".

      We will be the ones sitting back and watching as YOU meet your day of reckoning. (<- That's how it's spelled by the way.) Keep running our world into the ground. We're just letting you know that we'll be here to reclaim it after you fail. We are watching you, watching us.

    • Jay · 1465 days ago

      Ummmmmmm....I wonder how legal your procedures are? How may laws are you and your gang fragmenting while chasing those in illegal Internet activities? Frankly, I trust Anonymous with my personal information over any Government person or Government entity.

  8. PissedofGeek · 1541 days ago

    The Watcher, put a sock in it.
    You average Jo's and Janes do nothing, you watch as the world does horrible and devastating things and just hide in your homes and never take a stand. Slowly bit by bit the technology in our world is being used against us. Not be the members of anonymous but by the internet companies, carriers and other organizations who charge us for the little bit of content we want to see. Sure if you make a ton of money you can keep buying it but soon you'll realize that you've just been paying more and more for the content that used to be free. At least they're taking a stand, at least they're pointing out the flaws in your so called "perfect" world. If the problems didn't exist there wouldn't be anything for them to do. Fix your world before you start complaining about people fixing it for you.

  9. Patriot · 1541 days ago

    @"The Watcher", First off your are very arrogant if you think you can catch everyone. You simply put can not. There are more ways to cover one's tracks then you can even imagine. Some methods make it literally impossible for you to track people down. You claim to be a 'Cyber Cop', but unlike you I actually am a trained security professional who has worked on and even help build SIRPNet, NSANET and sevral of the protocals they use. I understand how to trace people, and how to prevent traces from matching me. What have you done?

    Now that being said. I don't like the work you do. I don't think you or your corporate masters are working in the best interest of any country, and are actively working against the best interest of the people. Bluntly, these corporations which you protect have trampled and destroyed our justice system. Lobbying congress to change the laws and rule to better support them while hurting the average person. They've even managed to negate our rights to use the courts if we have a contact that force arbitration. This is with out question unconstitutional, you can not surrender your rights to a fair trial like that! They steal from our public domain and call it there own, then when we try to take it back, we can end up losing everything.

    YOU are the enemy here. You and your corporate masters. I fully support the actions of Lulzsec and Antonymous, and I hope they succeed in forcing these companies to rethink their policies. But know this, such resentment and action doesn't come about for no reason. People are pissed and the more creative have found methods to unleash their anger and make them self heard in a non-violent fashion. If by chance you do manage to shut down this avenue of discontent, be aware that some individuals will not be content to just surrender. Some WILL take their fight into the real world, and when that happens many innocent lives will be lost in the crossfire. I do not want to see this happen, no one should ever have to die. Yet if your actions continue, if you continue to fight against this growing resentment, you will have a war. Much like what happened in France.

    If you truly care about the people, then know that you are on the wrong side. The rich and powerful you server don't give a shit about us the people, and the feeling is mutual.

    "We are watching you."
    And who watches the watchers?

    • Scammed person · 1541 days ago

      I agree, "Antonymous" - Italian branch of anonymous, BEWARE!

    • I think the "Non-Violent" kinda makes the point. At least its a form of protest where no-one gets hurt.

      The only thing I disagree with is when Lulzsec are posting personal information of innocents to make a point in order to wound the company. That is wrong, its one thing to make an example and attack something you believe in but they are hitting innocents in the crossfire using their current methods.

      As for all the technical points, yes exactly there are numerous ways to stay anonymous unfortunately for alot of their members their not all that security savvy and are being recruited in such a way that could get them caught.

      At least DDoS attacks only create a temporary disruption to the target and other than that target and some financial impact, there is little in the way of fall out.

    • Cire · 1536 days ago

      "You claim to be a 'Cyber Cop', but unlike you I actually am a trained security professional who has worked on and even help build SIRPNet, NSANET and sevral of the protocals they use. I understand how to trace people, and how to prevent traces from matching me. What have you done? "

      Perfect! I love your analogy! <3 and good point!

  10. Mark · 1510 days ago

    @Cire, sounds like you have done research. Good for you. However, so you claim you have helped design SIRPNet, but whats most interesting is, its not that secure. It would have been a little more impressive if you said...."I helped design the CIA's intranet. Which, would be Intelink P. Which, given the fact, all of this information is readily available on various sites-----doesn't make it that secure. But, at least I can say I met the infamous Dr. Ruth A. David in 1996. But, then again, who cares? Epeen doesn't matter. Those who boast have no skill. It takes true talent to develop something underground and never take credit for it. NSA is loaded with old timer cryptanalysts and other talented individuals , many whom have died and never were truly recognized.

    On a side note, the talented programmers, systems analysts, network administrators, doctors, lawyers, key staff, all contribute to the Government's ability to torture innocent people and experiment on bodies whom they have not sought or cared to seek the permission to do so. So, what true accomplishments have you made? Unless, you are a Dick Cheney clone and you support such unlawful acts of barbarianism.

  11. Am just a 62, year old female. Latina.Cuban. In law school . I support Anonymous. I can see they are the new warriors. They are brilliant. It is easy to armchair diagnose and try to lessen what they have achieved. Lulzsec as well. I cheer quietly. All of you who are so very tech savvy I applaud you. The guerilla still a guerilla war but not fought on hard earth. No guns, just brains. I am naturally curious and my training is in anthropology. I have been a independent. Eschewed academia except for a brief 2 yr stint where I taught it and found teaching so restraining. I would have loved to have majored in computer science but I couldn't corral those binary numbers lessons in the 80's.

  12. Anonymous · 1303 days ago

    expect us

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About the author

Graham Cluley runs his own award-winning computer security blog at, 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. Follow him on Twitter at @gcluley