PlayStation Network Hackers Arrested in Spain

Identified as members of Anonymous

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PlayStation Network Hackers Arrested in Spain
[ Technology]

It looks like the first arrests in the April PlayStation Network hack have been made. The Spanish National Police say that they have detained three people – one man and two of unknown gender – in connection with the attacks that prompted Sony to shut down its online gaming service for over a month.

The NYT reports that the three people have all been identified as “local leadership” in hacktivist group Anonymous. One of the detained is a 31-year-old man who has been the target of an investigation stretching back to October of 2010. That investigation was started after hackers targeted the Spanish Ministry of Culture’s website.

From the NYT:

He had a computer server in his apartment in the northern port city of GijĂłn, from which the group attacked the Web sites of the Sony PlayStation online gaming store.

The same computer was also employed in coordinated cyberattacks against two Spanish banks, BBVA and Bankia, the Italian energy company Enel, as well as government sites in Spain, Egypt, Algeria, Libya, Iran, Chile, Colombia and New Zealand, the police said.

When the original PSN hack occurred Sony hinted that Anonymous was responsible, citing their prior conflicts with the group and a “We are Legion” file left behind by the hackers.

Anonymous quickly responded with an online letter of sorts. They said that the “We are Legion” file was a plant, put there to implicate Anonymous. They also hinted that by blaming them, Sony was simply attempting to cover up for their own failings. They also provided this argument, stating that it was against what they stood for to tamper with credit card info, as it was hinted that the PSN hackers did:

In the realm of criminal investigation, there is an important aspect of investigations that should never be overlooked. The “modus operandi” of a criminal rarely changes. Whoever did perform the credit card theft did so contrary to the “modus operandi” and intention of Anonymous. Public support is not gained by stealing credit card info and personal identities, we are trying to fight criminal activities by corporations and governments, not steal credit cards.

Later, some veteran members of Anonymous spoke out about the attacks. They said that just because Anonymous didn’t officially sanction the hacks, it doesn’t mean that members of Anonymous weren’t responsible:

If you say you are Anonymous, and do something as Anonymous, then Anonymous did it. Just because the rest of Anonymous might not agree with it, doesn’t mean Anonymous didn’t do it.

This news comes just days after a BBC interview with Sony’s Computer Entertainment Chief Kaz Hirai. In that interview, he said that Sony may never know who orchestrated the attacks that brought down the PSN.

With regard to the 100 million [compromised] accounts, we do know the information was accessed, we don’t know however what part of the 100 million accounts were taken from our servers. For example, it might be 100 million first names, it might be 100 million last four digits of a phone number, it could be the entire account information, we just don’t know, but I think the people that intruded our systems were very good in hiding their tracks as they left our systems, so we may not know for a very long time or we may never know.

PlayStation Network Hackers Arrested in Spain
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  • Adsense Publisher

    Great, so is Anonymous like the IRA of the internet where it’s members go off and do things in the organization’s name and the organization denounces the actions of it’s own members?

  • http://www.neilyamit.com Neil

    We may never know who attacked Sony’s PSN. I’m pretty sure the people behind the attack are already missing. Captured, killed.

    With Sony’s resources, it’s unthinkable that they’d just let the people responsible go away.

  • Marjorie

    If I remember correctly, George Hotz engineered the first hack on PS3. He even published it on his website so that other users can download games that are not from Sony. Obviously, these Spanish hackers thought that they will not be caught because they are in Spain. They are quite wrong. Sony has been really serious about preventing hacks on any of its game consoles.

  • http://www.ssrichardmontgomery.com ron

    Love the picture did somebody at the office pose for it to make story more interesting (grin)

    • Adsense Publisher

      No….more like, did somebody take the image from Getty Images? :)

  • http://www.advertnetworks.com.au Cracker

    FYI the term is Cracker not hacker… it still amazes me to see the media using the wrong term for someone who gains unlawful entry into another machine.

    Also to note any decent cracker will not use a server based in his own house to perform the so-called “hack” thats just silly and i am sure they would have had at least one compromised system to launch the attack from. Rather then a machine located at their own residence…

    hell they would be awfully daft to launch such an attack via their own infrastructure whilst wireless hot spots and the like are seemingly everywhere…

    that said i highly doubt the people arrested are the real criminals behind the attacks.

  • http://www.fairsandfestivals.net Joseph Taylor

    Yeah look at the list of people they attacked. These are some true wicked people attacking government that are known for restricting the online rights of their citizens they should be locked up.

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