AFP: British arrests, US raids over ‘Anonymous’ cyber attacks: “British arrests, US raids over ‘Anonymous’ cyber attacks
(AFP) – 12 hours ago
LONDON — British police arrested five people and the FBI launched raids across the US as part of a probe into cyber attacks by online group ‘Anonymous’, which last year assailed websites hostile to WikiLeaks.
In a series of dawn raids in England on Thursday, three teenage males and two adult men were arrested on suspicion of breaking the Computer Misuse Act 1990, London’s Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) said.
On the same day, the FBI executed more than 40 search warrants throughout the United States.
London police said in a statement that ‘five males aged 15, 16, 19, 20 and 26 are being held after a series of coordinated arrests at residential addresses.’
It added: ‘The arrests are in relation to recent and ongoing ‘distributed denial of service’ attacks (DDoS) by an online group calling themselves ‘Anonymous’.
‘They are part of an ongoing MPS investigation into Anonymous which began last year following criminal allegations of DDoS attacks by the group against several companies.
‘This investigation is being carried out in conjunction with international law enforcement agencies in Europe and the US.’
The FBI added in a statement that ‘Anonymous’, a loose-knit group of computer hackers, had targeted ‘major US companies across several industries.’
Last year, ‘Anonymous’ members launched assaults on the Amazon, Visa and Mastercard websites in apparent retaliation for the companies’ decision to stop working with whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks.
WikiLeaks is under political pressure in the United States for its publication of thousands of classified US diplomatic cables, which has enraged Washington.
In a typical DDoS attack, a large number of computers are commanded to simultaneously visit a website, overwhelming its servers, slowing service or knocking it offline completely.
The FBI said the attacks were aided by software tools which the group made available for free on the Internet.
Under British law, it is a criminal offence to carry out ‘any unauthorised act in relation to a computer’, punishable by up to ten years in jail and a fine of £5,000 (5,800 euros, $8,000).
‘Anonymous’ attacked Tunisian government websites this month and on Wednesday warned the Egyptian government of reprisals if it blocks Internet access for protesters.”
12,895 New Porn BitTorrent Lawsuits Filed Since December 23: “On December 16, 2010, things didn’t appear to be heading in a favorable direction for the likes of the USCG (US Copyright Group) or the bevy of other lawyers involved with P2P litigation. That’s because on that day, a judge in West Virginia ruled that instead of lumping thousands of defendants together in one lawsuit, the cases must be filed separately. This follows closely with other developments in these types of cases, which started when Judge Rosemary Collyer, who presides in the Far Cry case, ruled that only those defendants in her court’s jurisdiction could be sued.”
PRESS RELEASE: Schlock Horror! Stafford jury acquits fantasy porn defendant: “PRESS RELEASE: Schlock Horror! Stafford jury acquits fantasy porn defendant
By Nick | Published: January 7, 2011
For immediate release
Schlock Horror! Stafford jury acquits fantasy porn defendant
Prosecutors fail first test case to make mock erotic murder scenes illegal.
Kevin Webster, who downloaded erotic fantasy images with violent themes from the internet, (1) was found not guilty of possession of ‘extreme pornography’ (2) at Stafford Crown Court today. The jury were asked to decide whether obviously faked death images were in fact ‘realistic’ depictions of sexual violence; despite the prosecution having to accept, before the trial even began, that the images were clearly ‘staged’. In a victory for common sense and free speech the jury unanimously acquitted Mr Webster of all charges.
Mr Webster’s solicitor Myles Jackman of Audu and Co, who has now successfully defended a number of extreme pornography prosecutions (3), said: ‘The jury’s clear and unequivocal message is a damning blow to the credibility of the ill-conceived and prurient extreme pornography legislation. It has previously led to the state prosecuting the possession of dirty-jokes; and in Mr Webster’s case what were clearly unrealistic high-camp horror fantasy images’.
Expert witness Prof Feona Attwood of Sheffield Hallam University described the images in question as ‘less realistic than a British soap opera.’
According to Alexandra Dymock of Backlash, (4) the sexual civil liberties organisation who put Mr Webster in contact with his specialist legal team, said: ‘This ill-conceived, insufficiently researched and poorly written law has now been shown to be not only a waste of valuable legal aid and police resources, but that it is also out of step with the attitudes of ordinary members of the British public in the face of reasonable argument, even if they find the material itself distasteful.’
Backlash have petitioned the Coalition to include the extreme porn act in the forthcoming repeal bill and hope Mr Webster’s case illustrates the need for this repressive and intrusive legislation to be removed from the statute books.
Notes for editors
(4) Backlash http://www.backlash-uk.org.uk/ is an umbrella organisation providing legal, academic and campaigning resources defending freedom of sexual expression.
US authorities have subpoenaed Twitter for information about an Icelandic parliamentarian who until recently was a vocal supporter of WikiLeaks and its embattled founder Julian Assange.…
(Via The Register – Public Sector.)
A former Australian regulator recently speculated that there may be changes in the works for Australia’s smut regulation, suggesting that self-regulation may eventually follow. This is ahead of a review of the classification system that is being conducted by the Australian Law Review Commission (ALRC).…
(Via The Register – Public Sector.)
Regulating Sex, a seminar on sex and regulation will take place at the British Academy in London on 1 February 2011 from 1400 to 1700. The seminar focuses on the regulation of sex in relation to three key areas: media, labour and the internet.
* Laura Agustin, author of Sex at the Margins: Migration, Labour Markets and the Rescue Industry (2007)
* Yaman Akdeniz, author of Internet Child Pornography and the Law (2008)
* Martin Barker, author of The Video Nasties (1984), Ill Effects: The Media-Violence Debate (2001), and The Crash Controversy (2001)
Julian Petley, author of Censoring the Word (2007) and Censorship: A Beginner’s Guide (2009) will introduce and chair the event.
The British Academy is located at 10 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1Y 5AH
Nearest tube: Charing Cross (Cockspur Street exit), Piccadilly Circus (Lower Regent Street exit)
Buses: Piccadilly Circus, Lower Regent Street, Haymarket, Trafalgar Square
Wheelchair access: The British Academy has access for most wheelchairs.
The seminar is organized by the AHRC funded Onscenity