Hacking is simple, says author claiming role in breach of spyware firm
An anonymous author who claims to be the hacker who penetrated controversial UK-based Gamma Group International and aired 40 gigabytes of its dirty laundry has published a how-to guide for other hacktivists.
“I’m not writing this to brag about what an 31337 h4x0r I am and what m4d sk1llz it took to 0wn Gamma,” wrote the author, who rightly cautions that the unauthorized access of other people’s networks is illegal. “I’m writing this to demystify hacking, to show how simple it is, and to hopefully inform and inspire you to go out and hack shit. If you have no experience with programming or hacking, some of the text below might look like a foreign language. Check the resources section at the end to help you get started.”
The do-it-yourself guide explains how hackers can map entryways into a target’s network, scan for vulnerable services and exploit any that are found. It also lists some of the most common methods hackers use to keep their IP addresses and other digital fingerprints off their attacks. Among other things, the how-to suggests installing Whonix inside a hidden encrypted volume created by TrueCrypt and carrying out all operations from there. It also counsels against using Tor and instead using hacked servers. Again, this is illegal.
Ars is unable to confirm the claims that the author had any connection to the Gamma Group hack, which has now turned into the source of multiple news articles. Most notable of the news accounts so far is one reporting the government of Bahrain used the Gamma Group’s FinFischer software to spy on citizens who were later tortured. With 40 GB of e-mails and other data in the open, it wouldn’t be surprising for many similarly damning articles to follow. Ars doesn’t advocate trespasses of networks, but also believes the guide, and its claim to be published by the hacker behind the Gamma Group breach, is a newsworthy event worth reporting.