Having done it all for the “lulz” and just because they could, the small group of hackers known as Lulz Security (or LulzSec) have disbanded after 50 days together – leaving in their wake angry and embarrassed websites and government organisations around the world.
On its website over the weekend, LulzSec posted a final farewell to its fans (and to those less than enamoured with its activities) saying: “For the past 50 days we've been disrupting and exposing corporations, governments, often the general population itself, and quite possibly everything in between, just because we could.” The post goes on to strangely draw comparisons with Hitler and Osama Bin Laden stating that while these two villains had similarities they also had a lot of differences – just like the LulzSec hackers. The hackers also call on fellow anarchists to continue the movement: “We hope, wish, even beg, that the movement manifests itself into a revolution that can continue on without us. The support we've gathered for it in such a short space of time is truly overwhelming, and not to mention humbling. Please don't stop.”
As well as announcing their retirement, the members of the group made one last release including documents from games companies, a private investigator, AOL and AT&T. While the group managed to garner huge media coverage in its short time in existence, it also managed to attracted the hatred and anger of other hackers and people effected by the various attacks on websites. The group has attacked a diverse range of websites including PBS, Sony Pictures, Nintendo and multiple games websites such as EVE Online before turning their attentions to more serious targets such as the FBI-affiliate website InfraGard and the Serious Organised Crime Agency in the UK. These later attacks managed to attract the attention of the authorities around the world and this lead to the arrest of a teenager in Essex, though LulzSec claimed Ryan Cleary was not a member of the group and had merely facilitated a chat room for them. Late last week other hackers, annoyed with the group, decided to take things into their own hands. One hacker, called Oneiroi, claimed to have brought down the LulzSec website for a few hours on Friday morning and another, called The Jester, released information about the leader of the group, known as Sabu.
Despite garnering a lot of attention, most serious hackers looked on LulzSec as a group of amateurs rather than as a serious threat. The members of the group will no doubt continue to attack what they perceive as legitimate targets and the movement has also inspired similar groups to begin such attacks. This means we are likely to see a lot more of these type of attacks in the coming months.