IDG News Service - Authorities in the U.S. and Germany have raided Internet Service Providers in hopes of tracking down the hackers who launched distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks against Web sites such as Visa.com, PayPal.com, and Mastercard.com earlier this month.
In documents posted Wednesday to the Smoking Gun Web site, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation describes the complex path its investigation has taken as it has searched for the computers that served as a central meeting point for the attacks.
After Germany's Federal Criminal Police raided service provider Host Europe, they linked one of he IRC servers to Dallas's Tailor Made Services, the documents state. Two hard drives were seized from Dallas's Tailor Made Services on Dec. 16, the Smoking Gun reports. Another IRC server has been traced to Fremont, California's Hurricane Electric.
Neither Hurricane Electric nor Tailor Made Services could be reached immediately for comment Thursday.
The early-December attacks were part of a grassroots campaign called "Operation Payback," which tried to put pressure on companies that had severed relations with WikiLeaks after it began publishing classified U.S. Department of State cables. Operation Payback is the work of a group called Anonymous, which has launched similar attacks against the Church of Scientology and the Motion Picture Association of America in the past.
The attacks were strong, but minimally disruptive. They knocked Web sites offline, but they didn't touch any of the target's back-end transaction processing systems. They also garnered a lot of publicity for Anonymous.
Ringleaders urged volunteers to download software that flooded Web sites with useless Internet traffic, ultimately causing may of them to come grinding to a stop. Other victims included the Web sites of WikiLeaks critic Sarah Palin and the Swedish Prosecutor's Office, which is pursuing sex charges against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
The FBI investigation centers on the IRC servers, used to coordinate the attacks. The FBI initiated the investigation on Dec. 9 after PayPal provided them with the Internet Protocol addresses of eight IRC servers used in by the group.
On Dec. 9, Dutch police arrested a 16-year-old boy in connection with the attacks.
- NSA used 'European bazaar' to spy on EU citizens
- Target CIO resigns following breach
- Evan Schuman: Mobile IT Roach Motel: Data checks in, but it won't check out
- Sears finds no evidence of data breach -- yet
- Gameover malware is tougher to kill with new rootkit component
- Mobile app for RSA Conference exposes personal data
- UK man charged with hacking Federal Reserve
- Bloomberg clamps down with data-access policies after scandal
- Amazon.com security slip allowed unlimited password guesses on mobile apps
- Huge turnout at RSA shows hackers are winning
- 15 Non-Certified IT Skills Growing in Demand
- How 19 Tech Titans Target Healthcare
- Twitter Suffering From Growing Pains (and Facebook Comparisons)
- Agile Comes to Data Integration
- Slideshow: 7 security mistakes people make with their mobile device
- iOS vs. Android: Which is more secure?
- 11 sure signs you've been hacked
- Performance Management: The Mobile App Development Playbook This comprehensive 16 page Forrester Research, Inc. report, authored by Jeffrey Hammond, Forrester VP and Principal Analyst, details a number of valuable, commonly...
- New Problems Require Innovative Solutions The mobile market is expected to be worth $25 billion by 2015
- Getting Agnostic about Mobile Devices The idea of being able to interact with customers, prospects, and stay attuned to competitive pressures is not new, but the velocity at...
- Pay-as-you-Grow Data Protection: IBM Tivoli's Full-featured Data Protection Suite for Small to Medium Businesses IBM Tivoli Storage Manager Suite for Unified Recovery gives small and medium businesses the opportunity to start out with only the individual solutions...
- Meg Whitman presents Unlocking IT with Big Data During this Web Event you will hear Meg Whitman, President and CEO, HP discuss HAVEn - the #1 Big Data platform, as well...
- The New Way to Work Knowledge Vault This Knowledge Vault focuses on how, in today's increasingly virtual world, it's more important than ever to engage deeply with employees, suppliers, partners,... All Mobile Apps White Papers | Webcasts