Hacker roundup: Arrests are shrinking LulzSec, Anonymous membership

With multiple arrests worldwide this year of LulzSec and Anonymous members, the number of at-large hackers in both hackers groups is rapidly dwindling. LulzSec’s non-fingerprinted membership, in fact, could be down to two.

According to a recent tweet by LulzSec/Anonymous leader Sabu, only he and one other member of LulzSec have not been arrested.

Last week, the FBI arrested alleged LulzSec member Cody Kretsinger and alleged People’s Liberation Front members Christopher Doyon and Joshua Covelli. Both groups are associated with the hacking group Anonymous.

Related coverage:

What is Anonymous? It is not pro-privacy

LulzSec: Not Robin Hood, more like Bonnie and Clyde

The FBI’s Los Angeles division arrested Kretsinger, 23, of Phoenix, Ariz., allegedly known as “Recursion,” for hacking into Sony Pictures Entertainment’s system in June. Kretsinger was charged with conspiracy and the unauthorized impairment of a protected computer.

Kretsinger and others are accused of using an SQL injection attack to obtain confidential information via Sony’s website and distributing the stolen information on LulzSec’s website, as well as announcing the attack on Twitter. Additionally, Kretsinger used the U.K.-based virtual private network proxy service HideMyAss.com to disguise his IP address when connecting to the Sony Pictures site and permanently erased the hard drive of the computer he used to conduct the attack. The extent of the Sony breach is still under investigation.

In a separate indictment, Christopher Doyon, 47, of Mountain View, Calif., and Joshua Covelli, 26, of Fairborn, Ohio, were charged with conspiracy to cause intentional damage to a protected computer, causing intentional damage to a protected computer and aiding and abetting, reported Fox News.

Doyon and Covelli are charged with using their computers to launch a distributed denial-of-service attack in December 2010 on Santa Cruz County, Calif.'s servers, causing them to briefly go down.

Doyon, allegedly “Commander X,” pleaded not guilty, CNET reported. Doyon is homeless and has been living on the streets in Mountain View for the past few months after living on the streets in Berkeley, Calif., said his lawyer, Jay Leiderman, to CNET. Doyon is being tried in the U.S. District Court of San Jose, Calif.

Fox News also reported that search warrants were being executed in New Jersey, Minnesota and Montana. And the U.K.-based Guardian reported that another LulzSec member, known as “Neuron,” may also be facing arrest if the British government can trace him via his usage of HideMyAss.

Kretsinger was found with the help of the VPN proxy service, which turned its logs over to the police. In a lengthy blog on the subject, HideMyAss said: “As stated in our terms of service and privacy policy our service is not to be used for illegal activity, and as a legitimate company we will cooperate with law enforcement if we receive a court order. .. It is very naive to think that by paying a subscription fee to a VPN service you are free to break the law without any consequences.”

The blog went on to say that, as a U.K. based company, it complies only with U.K. law, and would comply with requests only if they are delivered through U.K. legal channels.

About the Author

Kathleen Hickey is a freelance writer for GCN.


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