The FBI has arrested 16 alleged members of the notorious hacking group Anonymous on Tuesday morning in a nationwide takedown of the infamous hacking group. The arrests were reportedly took place in states including Florida, New Jersey and California.
As part of a current investigation into Anonymous, the feds issued the arrests, along with 30 to 40 search warrants on Tuesday, Fox News reported. Anonymous has claimed responsibility for several cyber attacks against many websites including Visa and Mastercard.
I can confirm that we're conducting law enforcement actions relating to a criminal investigation, Fox News quoted Alicia Sensibaugh, a spokeswoman for FBI's San Francisco office.
According to sources, California searches, carried out at 6 a.m. PDT, bear connections to claims that a series of distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks were carried out against several companies and their websites by a national network of hackers.
The FBI executed search warrants at the New York homes of three suspected members of Anonymous - two in Long Island and one in Brooklyn, Fox News reported.
FBI agents were seen removing at least one laptop from the home of Giordani Jordan, one of the individuals targeted at the Baldwin, N.Y.
The searches and arrests come in the middle of a recent spike in activity by Anonymous. Last week, the hacking collective broke into a server operated by government contractor Booz Allen Hamilton and disclosed log-in credentials including 90,000 military email addresses and passwords.
The attack on Booz Allen Hamilton followed the attack on IRC Federal, a contractor that works with the Army, Navy, NASA, the Department of Justice and other government agencies. Anonymous released the snippets of information on text-sharing site Pastebin. It also posted a 107MB torrent file on Pirate Bay.
Earlier, Anonymous had hacked Arizona Police website and compromised data, claiming that to be a protest against the state's immigration laws. In another protest against a new internet user filtering scheme, the group broke into the Turkish government's website for the second time last month.