Palin Hackers Behind Sick Pranks
September 21, 2008
The mystery group, who call themselves Anonymous, posted a number of the Republican vice-presidential candidate’s private emails and family photos on the internet.
The McCain campaign were furious and called it a “shocking invasion of privacy and a violation of law” – and called for those responsible to be prosecuted.
The FBI are now hunting the gang, who bragged about how they were able to obtain Mrs Palin’s password by guessing she had met her husband at high school and knew her date of birth and postal code.
Using the details, one hacker – who uses the online handle Rubico – said he tricked Yahoo into assigning a new password for Mrs Palin’s email account.
Anonymous, who have so far evaded capture by successfully masking their IP addresses, have hit the headlines on many occasions over their twisted antics.
They have been dubbed ‘hackers on steroids’ by the US media and get their kicks by making prank calls, flooding message boards with obscene photos and breaking into people’s social network sites to out them as gay.
In March this year, they flooded an epilepsy website with flashing images, causing some members to suffer migraines and seizures.
The FBI is investigating what may be the first computer attack that physically harmed people.
They also stormed a virtual world known as Habbo by sending in black-skinned avatars with Afro hair to block off the pool to other users, claiming it was infected with AIDS.
They also formed swastika formations.
The group was slated over the suicide of US student Mitchell Henderson, who they claimed had shot himself because he lost his iPod, something he had noted on his MySpace page.
Anonymous seized on a badly written message on his online memorial page and turned the phrase “an hero” into an internet catchphrase.
For more than a year, the sick group carried on the harassment by calling the youngster’s parents, pretending to be his ghost.