“Anonymous” hacked the CIA, Alabama State, and several Mexican websites this past Friday into the weekend. I’m not sure what they’re trying to prove with the wacked manifesto’s they’ve published justifying the hacking of those websites. I have to wonder what types of people they have actually doing these hacks. Scruffy guys, wearing t-shirts, sitting around eating Hot Pockets and drinking Monster Energy drinks having a debate on what site to hit next? I have a different theory.
My thought is that its all of us unsuspecting, unprotected, “I have anti-virus” types out there that don’t know or wish to acknowledge the threat that exists on the Internet. It hasn’t come out exactly how these sites were taken down on Friday, but if I were a betting man I’d put money down on a distributed denial of service attack, or DDoS for short. It’s the method that hackers use to link hundreds or thousands of computers around the world and instruct them, through malware, to ping flood a single IP address. A ping flood is sending large packets of information via a persistent ping command. Here’s a screen shot of a persistent ping, I used a bogus IP for the sake of demonstration.
While I don’t agree with any sort of hacking practice, others out there are basically for hire. They take a job, transparent to the target, reason, cause, etc. If the goal of the hire is successful, they get paid. It literally is as simple as that. Most of these guys operate out of countries where government corruption is rampant, and therefore they are able to operate with little or no hassle from local officials. They get paid too in the form of bribes.
I personally use these tools and have for several years now. I’m of the opinion that just because something is free doesn’t necessarily make it any less effective than something you have to pay for. In most cases if I like a product that is free, I’ll send in a suggestion for improvement along with a “donation” to grease the wheels on my request. In all but 1 case, the suggestion was added to a future release.
- Avast Anti-Virus (www.avast.com)
- Microsoft Security Essentials (best experience on Windows 7)
- Malwarebytes Anti-Malware
Using these tools together, will provide you quite a bit of protection from anyone attempting to use your computer with or without your knowledge. In conjunction with an updated browser (IE9 or IE8, Firefox, Chrome) there are several built-in protections that warn you of potentially un-safe sites or downloads. Don’t just click on them blindly and allow the hacker crap to get on your computer.
Be safe, its a mine field of crap on the Internet if you’re not aware of where it’s sitting….