back to article IT'S WAR: Hacktivists throw in their lot with spies and the military

Hacktivism has lost its innocence. Once characterised in the early days of Anonymous back in 2008 by assaults against the Church of Scientology, it has now become part and parcel of far darker plans, such as the spread of terrorist propaganda by Islamic militants. Meanwhile, over in the Ukraine, cyber militias of patriot …

  1. T J

    Yeah, um, how far......?

    How far, really, is it going to get?

    Ok Windows doesn't stand a chance, it blows away like chaff in the wind against any serious security hack. But major servers don't run on Windows.

    OSX fares a little better with its BSD heritage, but it too isn't tooo hard to smash into. But major servers don't run on OSX.

    They run on Linux.

    They run on open-source software that has an entire world's worth of security experts and security theorists probing into its every chess-move.

    There will always be holes.

    It's just... there might not be all that many of them, in the end.

  2. channel extended
    Pirate

    The problem..

    The problem will always be people. Misconfiguring, Fail to Patch, and Dumb Ideas! Computers do what we tell them to, nothing more nothing less.

    The skull, because it's WAR!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Robert Helpmann?? Silver badge
    Childcatcher

    Honorable Mention

    I know that it's common in the US to talk about the "War on Drugs" but for folks in Mexico, it is a war of the very real shooting variety. While not hackers, per se, online services have been used both against and by the various drug gangs. Where ISIS depends on online effacement to draw attention to itself, bloggers in Mexico try to call out the bad actors in their area. Alas, they could use some lessons in how to conceal their real-world names and locations; many have been tracked down and executed with their killers posting pictures of the deceased online as notice to the rest as to what will happen to them if they speak out.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's just one Monotheistic Deity against another...

    Al-Mammon vs Al-lah

    1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      Re: It's just one Monotheistic Deity against another...

      If you really don't see any other difference in the two sides than this, you perhaps haven't thought about it enough.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    on the internet

    there is rather a lot of false-flag attribution for cyber-anything

    if you ever get in your hand an important document for <<cyber-security prevention of world-war-3>>, it's quite a useful trick to look at all the made-up cyber-words, cyber-cruft, cyber-dingles then remove the "cyber-" replace with precisely nothing, and re-read the document to see if it still makes sense, and see if we still need radical new laws to protect us from something?

    hopefully you might find a statement like:

    increasingly cyber-criminals make cyber-attacks causing cyber-damage to cyber-nato requiring the investment of X-billion dollars to recruit cyber-police

    which translates to, in the real world:

    increasingly criminals make attacks causing damage to nato requiring the investment of X-billion dollars to recruit police

    to which you can clearly see that we already have the police, they can arrest some of the non-aristo criminals, and the crime is solved, now we can spend the X-billion dollars on the NHS?

    1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: on the internet

      it's quite a useful trick to look at all the made-up cyber-words, cyber-cruft, cyber-dingles then remove the "cyber-" replace with precisely nothing

      The prefix "cyber" attached to any root other than "netic" is generally 1) meaningless, and 2) an indication that the author doesn't know what he or she is talking about.

      More formally, there's an inverse relationship between the number of "cyber"s and the information entropy of any given message. Just by using it twice here I've made this post dumber.

  6. Alan J. Wylie

    cyder-espionage group

    cyder-espionage group

    somebody's upsetting the apple cart.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Meanwhile at NATO Cyberwar HQ

    They're working on upgrading from Windows Metro to Windows 10.

    Wouldn't hold out too much hope for a quick victory in any altercation with Russia if this is the state of network security for the defenders of freedom and democracy.

    Maybe they will send Mr. Clippit to the front lines - "Looks like you're working on a cyber-war, can I help?"

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Meanwhile at NATO Cyberwar HQ

      The weaponry that the likes of a NATO needs to be in any way effective in maintaining a sane peace in a time and places and spaces of mayhem and madness is Registered and contained in the codes and protocols which supply .....Virtualisation and its Pragmatic Application for the Delivery of Future Realities/Epic Media Hosted Tales

  8. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

    Depressing

    Here we have a good report that actually fully examines an issue, and after three days there are only nine comments. I hope that many of the other commenters I would expect to see here have done as I did, and put the article aside until more time could be devoted to it, but I worry that the readership is made up of the same attention deficient individuals that inhabit true red-top websites.

    Well, done, El Reg, for publishing this lengthy article, and don't let the lack of comments put you off publishing more of them.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Depressing

      I can't speak for anyone else but this is just after going through it several times today. Two observation. (1) flexible alliances of the moment has been recorded as happening, ummm, since they've been recording history in the Middle East. (2) ISIS drew much of its membership from AQI [Al Quadai in Iraq] and I'd put far more weight on this rather than ISIS being too violent for Al Quadai can accept. As such, they likely received some members with the appropriate skillz.

      Not that any of this matters to various media, corporate and political cyber-hype machines. As for me, I'm disconnecting my valuable machines away from any connectivity, not just the web. Friendly-fire, for some damned reason is usually, distressingly, more accurate than enemy-fire. Just saying (veteran obs.)

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