Anonymous is at it again, this time attacking Sony and its playstation.com site for gamers, promising to publish personal details about Sony executives online and to unleash a triple wave of botnets against company sites.
The playstation.com site was unavailable at 11:30 a.m. Eastern as promised by Anonymous and despite Sony hiring distributed denial-of-service mitigation firm Prolexis to protect its sites. Half an hour later it was up but painfully slow.
CLOSER LOOK: The DDoS hall of shame
In an IRC interview with playstationlifestyle.net blogger Sebastian Moss, an Anonymous member identified as Takai said yesterday that the group was aware of Prolexis being hired and that it would expand its attack beyond use of the Anonymous distirbuted DoS tool of choice, Low Orbit Ion Cannon (LOIC).
"We do however have ways for dealing with the 'Prolexic' factor," Takai is quoted as saying. "[T]he last thing we want, is Sony thinking we were in any way discouraged."
"I will however say, that if Sony thinks LOIC is the only trick in our hat ... they're in for a hell of a wake-up call. We're really going all out for this one."
In a chat posted by PlayStation Universe www.psu.com , someone claiming affiliation with Anonymous says it has lined up botnets to supplement the volunteers that usually carry out Anonymous attacks. "We have several primary, several secondary, and several tertiary botnets involved in the attack," the writer says.
It's all in response to Sony suing two owners of PlayStation 3s who developed and released code that allows third-party software as wells as the Linux operating system to run on the platform. Sony says it violates licensing agreements that come along with buying a PS3.
Anonymous regards it as censorship about how Sony products work. "Your corrupt business practices are indicative of a corporate philosophy that would deny consumers the right to use products they have paid for, and rightfully own, in the manner of their choosing," according to a posting on the anonnews.org Web site announcing its OpSony, part of its ongoing Operation Payback that has targeted many different entities. The group takes credit for helping to topple governments in Egypt and Tunisia, sullying the reputation of HBGary Federal and its leaders, supporting Wikileaks with distributed DoS attacks against its perceived enemies and now Sony, for suing a California PS3 jailbreaker.
In addition to the Sony takedowns, Anonymous is also soliciting the names of likely Sony executives to target with the goal of obtaining personal documents about them and posting them on the Internet.
PS3 users have posted comments online saying they don't think they should suffer thorough the PS3 Web site outages because they have done nothing wrong. "These attacks screw the consumer 1st, the developers 2nd and Sony 3rd," says one identified as Morgus on the playstationlifestyle.net site. "Way to prioritize.
Read more about wide area network in Network World's Wide Area Network section.