Anonymous Hacker Pulls Plug on Thousands of Dark Net Sites

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Twenty % of the Darkish Internet was taken offline final week, when a hacker compromised a server internet hosting some 10,000 web sites on the Tor community.

Tor, designed to cover the identities of its customers, is extensively used on the Darkish Internet, which isn’t listed by mainstream search engines like google and serves as a hub for unlawful on-line actions.

Guests to the affected pages have been greeted with the message, “Howdy, Freedom Internet hosting II, you’ve been hacked.” Freedom Internet hosting II is the server that hosted the Tor pages.

The attacker, who has claimed to be a part of the hacker collective Nameless, reportedly took Freedom Internet hosting II offline as a result of 50 % of its websites contained little one pornography.

The unique Freedom Internet hosting websites hosted as a lot as 50 % of the Darkish Internet’s pages as of 2013, when it was taken down by legislation enforcement. A lot of little one porn prosecutions adopted that motion.

Rudimentary Hack

This incident supposedly was the primary hack carried out by the attacker, who claimed duty in an interview with Motherboard. Along with taking Freedom II offline, the particular person stole 74 gigabytes in recordsdata and a 2.3-GB database.

The database stolen from Freedom II incorporates 381,000 e mail addresses — 1000’s of them with .gov extensions, Troy Hunt, who runs the Have I Been Pwned web site, advised Wired.

Nonetheless, these .gov addresses is probably not reputable, he famous.

The hack of Freedom II was comparatively rudimentary, stated Tim Condello, technical account supervisor and safety researcher at RedOwl.

“They recognized a configuration situation and used it to determine the foundation consumer of the system and acquire management of it that method,” he advised TechNewsWorld. After gaining management of the system, “they overwrote the index file and redirected the touchdown web page for all of the web sites to a touchdown web page containing their message.”

Shared Vulnerabilities

This assault demonstrates that in terms of resistance to vulnerabilities, the Darkish Internet doesn’t have an edge.

“The underlying expertise of the Darkish Internet isn’t something revolutionary. The best way a content material administration system or a internet hosting service operates is an identical to the way it’s achieved on the open Internet,” Condello stated.

“The distinction is how the content material is communicated, so it’s accessible solely via the Darkish Internet,” he continued.

“The code that’s used for a discussion board on the Darkish Internet is similar code that’s used on the clear Internet,” Condello defined, “so if there’s a vulnerability recognized for WordPress, that vulnerability will be exploited on a Darkish Internet web site utilizing WordPress simply as it might on the open Internet.”

Flaws in Darkish Internet

The assault on Freedom II additionally exhibits the hazard of concentrating assets in a central location.

“The truth that so many websites used this single specific internet hosting supplier meant {that a} breach of that supplier meant a breach of 1000’s of websites,” famous Danny Rogers, CEO of Terbium Labs.

“The anonymity of the Darkish Internet depends on its distributed nature,” he advised TechNewsWorld. “These types of centralizations create important weaknesses.”

Though breaking into servers and stealing knowledge on the open Internet is prohibited, it stays to be seen what the implications could also be for the hacker of Freedom II.

“I’m certain they angered lots of people, however I’m unsure how a lot anybody can do about it,” Rogers stated.

There could also be authorized ramifications from the assault, however they could possibly be for the folks recognized within the dump of stolen knowledge relatively than for the hacker.

“The info launch goes to be a significant boon to legislation enforcement,” Rogers noticed.

Extra Assaults to Come

Assaults on the Darkish Internet are commonplace, however they don’t typically get the visibility of the assault on Freedom II.

“These assaults will proceed on a tempo with what we see on the clear Internet,” Condello maintained.

“I believe the brand new sample goes to be [that] as vulnerabilities are revealed on the open Internet, individuals are going to go to the Darkish Internet and see if there are any websites with those self same vulnerabilities,” he prompt. “Gaining access to websites constructed round anonymity and pulling the curtain again on that may give you energy and cash.”

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