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Anonymous Responds to Sony's Theft Accusations With a Definitive 'Nuh-Uh!'

Hacker posse claims no part in the identity theft shenanigans that took PSN offline.

There is certainly no love lost between Sony and the theatrically-gifted hacker collective known as Anonymous. The group took aim at the publisher following their legal hassling of PS3 firmware-cracker George "GeoHot" Hotz, albeit largely through a series of proposed pranks and standard denial-of-service attacks that resulted in some supposed connectivity interruptions for the PlayStation Network service.

At Anonymous, every day is Guy Fawkes Day.
But even with all that chicanery going on, many an eyebrow was raised yesterday when a letter from Sony Computer Entertainment boss Kaz Hirai, directed at questions from the U.S. Congress over the mass theft of user information via PSN, directly called out Anonymous as likely perpetrators, citing files found on company hard drives titled "Anonymous," which contained a portion of the group's downright biblical slogan, "We are Anonymous. We are Legion."

Anonymous, troublemakers as they often are known to be, have never really seemed to be of the mind that stealing innocent people's personal information and credit card data was in any way okay, and today they reinforced that notion in an online statement denying any involvement in the theft.

Read part of the statement:

"If a legitimate and honest investigation into the credit card [theft] is conducted, Anonymous will not be found liable. While we are a distributed and decentralized group, our 'leadership' does not condone credit card theft. We are concerned with erosion of privacy and fair use, the spread of corporate feudalism, the abuse of power and the justifications of executives and leaders who believe themselves immune personally and financially for the actions they undertake in the name of corporations and public office."

Elsewhere in the statement, Anonymous was quick to point out that their corporate "adversaries" have, in the past, taken to erroneously blaming them for things they had nothing to do with, effectively insinuating that Sony may just be accusing them due to a lack of any other feasible target.

Granted, Anonymous is a multi-headed group with many different factions, and while the group's "leadership" might have had nothing to do with it, there's nothing to say a random, pissed off sect couldn't have gone rogue and done the deed themselves. Or, maybe no one at Anonymous was involved, and whoever did hack in and steal PSN user data just left those files as a smoke screen. Or maybe everyone is lying? Or telling the truth? Who knows? All we do know is that nobody is happy right now, and nobody will be until the dust settles on all of this and we truly know exactly what the ramifications of the whole event are. Anything else at this point just feels like a lot of noisy back-and-forth that distracts from the true issue at hand: Sony, its network security, and how things get made right for the affected consumers. Alex Navarro on Google+
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Posted by Alex

There is certainly no love lost between Sony and the theatrically-gifted hacker collective known as Anonymous. The group took aim at the publisher following their legal hassling of PS3 firmware-cracker George "GeoHot" Hotz, albeit largely through a series of proposed pranks and standard denial-of-service attacks that resulted in some supposed connectivity interruptions for the PlayStation Network service.

At Anonymous, every day is Guy Fawkes Day.
But even with all that chicanery going on, many an eyebrow was raised yesterday when a letter from Sony Computer Entertainment boss Kaz Hirai, directed at questions from the U.S. Congress over the mass theft of user information via PSN, directly called out Anonymous as likely perpetrators, citing files found on company hard drives titled "Anonymous," which contained a portion of the group's downright biblical slogan, "We are Anonymous. We are Legion."

Anonymous, troublemakers as they often are known to be, have never really seemed to be of the mind that stealing innocent people's personal information and credit card data was in any way okay, and today they reinforced that notion in an online statement denying any involvement in the theft.

Read part of the statement:

"If a legitimate and honest investigation into the credit card [theft] is conducted, Anonymous will not be found liable. While we are a distributed and decentralized group, our 'leadership' does not condone credit card theft. We are concerned with erosion of privacy and fair use, the spread of corporate feudalism, the abuse of power and the justifications of executives and leaders who believe themselves immune personally and financially for the actions they undertake in the name of corporations and public office."

Elsewhere in the statement, Anonymous was quick to point out that their corporate "adversaries" have, in the past, taken to erroneously blaming them for things they had nothing to do with, effectively insinuating that Sony may just be accusing them due to a lack of any other feasible target.

Granted, Anonymous is a multi-headed group with many different factions, and while the group's "leadership" might have had nothing to do with it, there's nothing to say a random, pissed off sect couldn't have gone rogue and done the deed themselves. Or, maybe no one at Anonymous was involved, and whoever did hack in and steal PSN user data just left those files as a smoke screen. Or maybe everyone is lying? Or telling the truth? Who knows? All we do know is that nobody is happy right now, and nobody will be until the dust settles on all of this and we truly know exactly what the ramifications of the whole event are. Anything else at this point just feels like a lot of noisy back-and-forth that distracts from the true issue at hand: Sony, its network security, and how things get made right for the affected consumers.
Staff
Posted by TadThuggish

This would be noteworthy, except the fact that Anonymous has no actual core base and that any 12-year-old with too much time on his hands can write a statement and email it calling himself "Anonymous".  Please stop treating this shit seriously.

Posted by Falconer

Anyone with internet knowledge knows what they're line is. They could have easily been framed. Just sayin'.

Posted by IceColdGamer

Let the FBI investigate and let's leave the speculation to the authorities. 

Posted by MrMazz

Yea I don't believe them 

Online
Posted by Commisar123

I care not

Posted by ch13696

It makes sense. Why would any hacker group leave their calling card in plain sight? They might as well have just sent Sony a letter saying "we did it".

Edited by Piranesi

Once Sony painted a target on itself, anyone could have taken the shot.


Erm, which one of these is the faceless organisation ...
Posted by MooseyMcMan

I still think all hackers are inherently bad people. 

Posted by Enigma777

How would they know? They're anonymous... 

Posted by AlexW00d

Do stop calling them a hacker group, for they are not hackers, not even slightly.

Posted by Hutzebraedl

So ebaumsworld did it?

Posted by mnzy

Who would even be the one to write such a statement? It's such a lose group.

Posted by Liquidus

I like that people keep on referring to Anonymous as though they are a group.........that's organized.........and have some of "leadership".

Posted by MEATBALL

Isn't this basically the problem with being the sort of amorphous 'anonymous' blob that they are? If someone claims to be acting on behalf of anonymous then it's pretty much the case. There are no doubt groups within the more structured elements of the anonymous super friends justice league that don't deserve blame, but when the group operates the way they do they're pretty much open to this kind of thing.

Posted by Fira

It was probably that company they ruined a while back, they admitted themselves they had back stocks of hacks and undiscovered flaws in almost every os

Posted by DrPockets000

I believe them actually.  Anonymous aggressively advertises their campaigns.

Posted by AxleBro

... i just want to play games... i don't give a fuck about any of this, i play fighting games, what the fuck am i supposed to do :( steam kinda sucks after a while.

Posted by error5305

This is getting ridiculous.

Posted by RiotBananas

Alex, can you cut back on the fucking lengthy titles? You're cluttering up my news feed.

Posted by swamplord666

well if it could have been a rogue member of anonymous, anonymous should find who he is and bring him to justice. This has gone beyond pranks on a multinational company. 

Edited by Slaker117

a random, pissed off sect

That is all Anonymous as a whole is. They aren't a proper entity; I wish people would stop referring to and treating them as one.
Posted by LadyShayne

All of this cloak and dagger hacker business would be so much cooler to read about if I wasn't a PS3 owner.

Edited by fabiosooner

One more piece of not-news ending with a half-truth - that the only 'true' issue at hand is Sony's network security. No, it is *one* of two true issues at hand.


The other is the fact that no network is really secure and can be hacked at any moment - it just takes someone motivated enough to do it. This fact behooves us to take pains to avoid giving personal/cc info whenever possible, AND reminds us that hacking is a serious problem that should be taken more seriously by the authorities.

While a lot of government entities are spending a lot of time making it harder for Sony than it already is - it's Sony that'll bear the lion's share of the financial losses, for god's sake - the invader(s) are out there, laughing and (probably) sitting on our info.

FRIGGIN' PRIORITIES, PEOPLE. First, get the robbers. THEN the government-backed parasites can put Sony against the wall.
Posted by Agent47
@Axleisbored: Yeah doomed Mortal Kombat release on PS3 since day one.Friggin sucks.
Posted by Krummey

So...?

Posted by Daveyo520

I am sure some of them did it but the others don't want to be a part of it. It is not like they are an actually group with any control. Also if they did do it they would deny it because they don't want everyone hating them.

Posted by buzz_killington

Of course when credit card info is retrieved and Sony gets questioned by the federal government, they're gonna deny it.

Posted by shenstra
I'll just copy/paste the bit I posted in a comment on Kotaku:

That's the thing about branding yourself as a legion of ostensibly anonymous attack drones. One rogue drone shoots a kid in the face and people blame all attack drones. And by defining themselves through their quasi-anonymity, they've made it impossible to disavow the rogue drone without resorting to "No true Scotsman"-arguments.  
Posted by patrick
@Slaker117 said:
"

a random, pissed off sect

That is all Anonymous as a whole is. They aren't a proper entity, and I wish people would stop referring to them as one. "
That time has come and gone and unfortunately won't mean much to people past what they can dig up on ED. All the group's most recent exploits with HBGary, Wikileaks, and the last bringing down of the WBC's site have been fairly concentrated attacks.
Posted by Theavy

Anonymous has yet to realize the Elephant in the room, they say "Fair Use" as if it were okay to give people the tools to steal. People work to make games and if, for example, someone("Geohot") dug under a farm and started pulling out potatoes and carrots for his friends(the internet), I wouldn't put it against the farmer to be angry and find ways to prevent it. Anonymous claims that Sony is the one breaking the rules but they are just trying to protect what is theirs and protect the integrity of their developers 

Posted by HeadNodShy
@AlexW00d: What about the stuff surrounding HBGary?
Posted by Bumpton
@LadyShayne:
Exactly why I do think it's awesome!
Posted by AlexW00d
@Guibone said:
" @AlexW00d: What about the stuff surrounding HBGary? "
I'm not sure what that is. But I meant as a whole, they aren't. I imagine at least a couple have some sort of hacking skills.
Posted by TigerDX

Is a locksmith an inherently bad person?


We still need hackers who are good people, so we can understand better the vulnerabilities in systems and prevent the hackers who are bad people from exploiting their knowledge in this way.
Posted by Jeffsekai

As everyone with half a brain already figured out =\

Posted by Commando

I doubt they did it. They would have bragged about it all over the internet as soon as they did it.
Anonymous is pure trash, but I believe them this time.

Posted by Sin4profit

I appreciate that these hardware hackers exist to monitor the business practices of corporate electronic companies and all, but the problem with this case is the way "antonymous" stuck their head out and advertised themselves for this event. 

Even if they weren't directly involved in anyway at all with the act at hand, by making themselves public on the issue, they have bought whatever hacker did have a hand in this the smoke screen that they can use to dodge responsibility and possibly score malicious gain.
So for all the "poor practices" they may accuse Sony of, their public relation in this story only makes them out to be hypocrites to me, they're a part of it, regardless of the speculative involvement they may have in this.
Posted by StriderNo9

LMAO I love these titles and I love how Alex writes, its like a stream of conscience style but with actual skill. 

Posted by PLWolf

They're idiots.
I just hope PSN does come back online this week.

Posted by Dedodido
@ShaggyChu said:
" Anyone with internet knowledge knows what they're line is. They could have easily been framed. Just sayin'. "
"Anyone with internet knowledge knows what they are line is."
Posted by Pinworm45
@ShaggyChu said:
" Anyone with internet knowledge knows what they're line is. They could have easily been framed. Just sayin'. "
This implies there's a core group. Anonymous is a bunch of people who find memes funny and reside on 4chan, occassionally desiring to feel cool by running scripts other people wrote to annoy people. There is no core group. Anyone claiming to represent them or claiming their ideological beliefs does not. It's as ridiculous as me, being a white person, claiming that white people aren't responsible for X and that we believe Y.

The entire thing is retarded and it needs to stop being taken seriously. Looking at you giant bomb.
Edited by allofmyhate

I second Pinworm45's motion.

Whoever wrote that statement has no idea what Anynymous is and how it works. Anynmous has no leadership. Therefore it's moot (teehee) whether someone who claim he's a part of Anonymous condones credit card theft or not. He can't speak for Anonymous.

Anonymous constantly troll each other by gifting Steam games paid for with stolen credit cards. Anonymous hacks epilepsy support group webpages by injecting javascripts that makes the webpage flash. The only reason these guys who call themselves Anonymous is attacking Sony is because they're whoring for attention.

Anyone can be a part of Anonymous. If the person who actually did hack PSN and obtained the credit card information browse Anonymous related webpages such as Ebaums, then it's perfectly fine to say that Anonymous did hack PSN.

tl;dr anyone who tries to speak for Anonymous is a retard who lacks the basic concept of what Anonymous is.

Posted by Theavy

@TigerDX


I dont think locksmiths are bad people nor do they represent anything bad because for one:

Locksmithing is a legitimate occupation, and secondly

Locksmiths dont then go into your house/car and steal stuff 
Posted by Slaker117
@patrick said:
" @Slaker117 said:
"

a random, pissed off sect

That is all Anonymous as a whole is. They aren't a proper entity, and I wish people would stop referring to them as one. "
That time has come and gone and unfortunately won't mean much to people past what they can dig up on ED. All the group's most recent exploits with HBGary, Wikileaks, and the last bringing down of the WBC's site have been fairly concentrated attacks. "
True, there has been a shift towards a more united group, but the open nature still prevents it from being easily defined. A small group who identifies themselves with Anon can still operate under the label without mass support. Because there is no true governing body, that sect is just as legitimate as any other. Though I'm sure there is a core group who plan and generally speak for the label, to have them be a proper committee who represents themselves to the public defeats the whole purpose. You can't have it both ways. Unless they choose to section themselves off from people who just want to dick around on 4chan, saying "Anonymous did it" is just as good as saying "Someone from the Internet did it".
Posted by PhilESkyline

Anonymous "stirred" up the bee's nest of crackers to attack even if they claim not to be behind the attack. Offline this would something similar to inciting a riot. The definition is below. I'm sure they have to share some of the responsibility for this attack.

Urging or instigating other persons to riot, but shall not be deemed to mean the mere oral or written (1) advocacy of ideas or (2) expression of belief, not involving advocacy of any act or acts of violence or assertion of the rightness of, or the right to commit, any such act or acts. 18 USC

Riot in this sense of the word would be for stirred up other crackers to attack Sony. Now, can we say that Sony would not have been attacked had Anonymous not done anything? Sure we can't but that's going to be difficult to prove as the timing is just so close.

Posted by fox01313

Problem with being an internet outlaw group like Anonymous, it's hard to prove your innocent especially with so many possible people saying they're part of that group who might have done this in some part if not all. Time will tell once these firms Sony hired to figure things out on the attacks who's who.

Posted by Burn1n9m4n

While it could be true that Sony is shifting at least part of the blame for this debacle to Anonymous, it seems implausible that Sony is making this up considering that blame shifting what has been a systemic failure of their service on virtually every level would not even begin to deal with the outright PR disaster this has become now that hearings are being held on the subject on Capitol Hill. 


Anonymous should not heralded for their past hacks. As a faceless entity acting outside of the law they are criminals by definition and have no leadership nor guidance. Just because a few of them have principles does not mean that all of them do. The fact that this hacking group seems naive enough to believe that everyone within their, for lack of a better word, umbrella subscribes to the same ideology is stupid.

Therefore, I not only believe that it's possible for someone within Anonymous to have done it, but until evidence to the contrary is provided otherwise I listen to everything Anonymous spits out with the same level of scepticism that I always have. 
Posted by Mechabolic

Please tell me why they are even in the news?!  Can you be a scriptkiddie and run a program overnight?  Congrats!  You are a super hacker!  This is nothing more than the real culprits pinning the blame on a bunch of loud kids with a "V for vendetta" fetish.  Now if this was done around 2006-2007, I might actually agree with you...

Posted by TheChaos
@TadThuggish said:
" This would be noteworthy, except the fact that Anonymous has no actual core base and that any 12-year-old with too much time on his hands can write a statement and email it calling himself "Anonymous".  Please stop treating this shit seriously. "
People taking it seriously is the joke.
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