In the ongoing war over digital privacy, copyrights, and internet freedom, hypocrisy just keeps rearing its ugly head. This isn’t surprising, given that there are millions of people employed by the U.S. and foreign governments, and corporations with a vested interest in restricting online media sharing. These millions of people like to listen to music, play games, read e-books, watch movies and television shows, and even watch porn. Yeah, I said watch porn. And you knows it’s true. It’s a mere question of statistics that some of these people–people who say we shouldn’t engage in such acts ourselves–are going to give themselves the ol’ “Get Out of Ethical Responsibility Free” card and pirate an episode of Dexter here and there.
Just yesterday we brought you news of a potential embarrassment for some government employees, when MegaUpload’s Kim Dotcom revealed that among MU users were government officials from the DoJ and Senate. More news of RIAA and DHS employees’ illegal downloading came out back in December. And now yet another potentially embarrassing situation presents itself to members of the U.S. government and military, following an attack on porn site DigitalPlayground.com a little over a week ago.
The attack was the debut work of a group calling itself Th3 Consortium, which claims ties to Anonymous and related hacking groups. Th3 Consortium announced the success of its first operation on Twitter March 4th, and alluded future attempts would follow.
#Anonymous Today we will be releasing free premium porn to our friends & frenemies #th3consortium #PenetratingThePenetrators
http://t.co/ZnARtiGG #Anonymous #freebies @YourAnonNews @TheHackersNews @anonymouSabuAs we promised this is our first but not last release
According to the hacking group, “27 admins’ names, usernames, e-mail addresses, and encrypted passwords; 85 affiliates’ usernames, plaintext passwords, and in some cases, IP addresses; and 82 .gov and .mil e-mail addresses with corresponding plaintext passwords” were compromised, reports AVN.
In a post left on DigitalPlaygrounds defaced homepage immediately following the attack, Th3 Consortium made light of the porn site’s numerous security lapses:
“This site has so many freaking holes that if I didn’t know it was a porn site, I would have mistaken it for a honeypot” – [Redacted]
We did not set out to destroy them but they made it too enticing to resist. So now our humble crew leave lulz and mayhem in our path.
The post also claimed that the group retrieved information on over seventy-two thousand users and forty thousand plaintext credit cards, including ccvs, names, and expiration dates. In addition, the group claimed to have tapped a DigitalPlayground conference call. They also directly mentioned their discovery of the .mil and .gov email addresses.
Eighty-two email addresses may not seem much when you’re looking at 72k total compromised accounts, and some of those 82 doubtless belong to bureaucrats, civil servants, and enlisted men on the very lowest rungs of the federal ladder. But others may very well belong to fairly high-ranking officials in both the government and military, and no matter the rank and responsibility of their owners, eighty-two individual representatives of the United States government may soon be outed for using federally-funded accounts to get their jollies off. That could be a lot of egg on the face of a government that wants to bring you digital privacy restrictions under the guise of child porn prevention.
Hat Tip: The Atlantic Wire