Trying to settle scores with the law enforcement for arresting their hacker comrades, the AntiSec brand of hackers have prised open scores of US law enforcement agency websites and posted online massive chunks data regarding police personnel.
The hackers, whose lineage goes back to the LulzSec and Anonymous breed, said they were doing this to avenge the arrest and exposure of teenage hacker Jake Davis in London as well as previous arrests made in connection with the hacking of government organizations and big corporates.
The anti-security firebrands have unleashed a wave of daring hack attacks aimed at governments and corporates in the past few months.
"We are doing this in solidarity with Topiary and the Anonymous PayPal LOIC defendants as well as all other political prisoners who are facing the gun of the crooked court system," the hacking group said.
They unearthed files containing email accounts from as many as 56 law enforcement Web sites, user names and passwords, home addresses, phone numbers, and Social Security numbers by breaching the secure server of Brooks-Jeffrey Marketing, a media services company.
Data relating to law enforcement agencies in Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri and Mississippi were affected by the cyber attack by the anti-security zealot group.
After the attack and securing huge cache of data, they lampooned the law enforcement, and said it took them less than 24 hours to work through the security defenses.
And then they posted the data on Pastebin and called it "Shooting Sheriffs Saturday Release". The hackers said the sheriffs kept on insisting that any data was breached. Various Sheriffs denied the news of a cyber attack on their Web sites, even as the hackers released online personal information including SSNs, passwords, addresses, and private emails.
And, far from being conscientious and worrying over the safety of police informers exposed through the data dump, the hackers said they relished the feeling of revenge. They said they absolutely had no qualms. "We have no sympathy for any of the officers or informants who may be endangered by the release of their personal information."
"For too long they have been using and abusing our personal information, spying on us, arresting us, beating us, and thinking that they can get away with oppressing us in secrecy… Well it's retribution time: we want them to experience just a taste of the kind of misery and suffering they inflict upon us on an everyday basis."
They also used stolen credit card information to make online donations to Bradley Manning and organizations like ACLU and Electronic Frontier Foundation.
The latest provocation for the hackers was the arrest of teenage hacker Jake Davis, who had worked as a spokesman for the hacking groups, and believed to have been operating under the name "Topiary".
The AntiSec said they wanted to "embarrass, discredit and incriminate police officers across the US," as they vowed to take revenge on the crackdown on the hacker fraternity.
They went ahead and gave clarion call to hackers the world over to rise up against the governments. "To our hacker comrades: now is the time to unite and fight back against our common oppressors. Escalate attacks against government, corporate, law enforcement and military targets: destroy their systems and leak their private data.”