ForexTV NewsDesk | October 5 2011 12:24 EDT
ForexTV.com (New York) by Dylan Tulic
Is hacktivist group Anonymous planning to attack the New York Stock Exchange in a show of support for the Occupy Wall Street protests? Depends who you ask. A message posted to YouTube under the account TheAnonMessage, which has previously posted numerous messages relating to the protests, indicated that the group was planning a denial of service attack on the NYSE website on Oct. 10.
“On Oct. 10, NYSE shall be erased from the Internet. On Oct. 10, expect a day that will never, ever be forgotten,” says the message, broadcast in a computer-generated voice. “We can no longer stay silent as the population is being exploited and forced to make sacrifices in the name of profit.” Instructions are then given on how to download Low Orbit Ion Cannon, or LOIC, a voluntary botnet tool that Anonymous has previously used to launch denial-of-service attacks.
But signs are showing that either the message came from someone using the Anonymous name for publicity, or that the group is fracturing internally over the issue. A message posted to the YourAnonNews site states that the group is not looking to take aim at NYSE and cautions those who would participate.
“We have taken notice to a planned attack which has been named #InvadeWallStreet, which is to be held out on Oct. 10. We strongly advise against this action and everything it entails to,” says the message. “We do not want history to repeat itself, and are sincerely worried.”
“Using a tool such as LOIC to get your message across would be deemed irresponsible and you would be signing your own ticket to jail,” the statement continues. Many members of Anonymous were arrested after participating in Operation Payback, the group’s campaign against the Motion Picture Association of America and related entities.
But if launched, could the attack be successful? In the past, LOIC has been able to take down major corporate websites with only a relatively small number of participants, but the publicity and arrests that followed is likely to deter all but the most fervent of followers from participating in the attack.
Additionally, NYSE is well-aware that it is a high-profile potential target for hackers of all kinds, and has responded accordingly in beefing up security measures. In 2009, a similar attack on nyse.com resulted in minimal impact to the operation of the website. The notice of the date of the attack should theoretically lead to beefed up security measures that would help NYSE deflect it.
With advance warning coming from a group that may or may not be united in its message that advocates using a tool that has led to arrests, it is unlikely that the level of participation required to achieve the goals of the attack would be reached.
Forex research by ForexTV.com