Anonymous helps ID alleged charity site hacker

Anonymous.

Anonymous.

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:40 AM ET

Members of the faceless hacker collective Anonymous helped track down a man suspected of attacking a website that raises money to feed hungry children, the New Zealand Herald reports.

Documentary-maker Bryan Bruce's website for Redsky Film and Television was hacked, the newspaper reports. All its data was erased and replaced with graffiti.

The site was promoting a documentary about the effects of poverty on kids in New Zealand, with a chunk of the profits going to a charity that provides breakfasts for hungry schoolchildren.

Someone with the username AnonVoldemort took credit for the attack, in an apparent bid to impress the members of Anonymous, a global collective of hackers that has taken credit for attacking government and corporate websites to protest laws or actions that go against the group's free-Internet philosophy.

Bruce, in a Facebook page connected to his site, asked Internet users to help fix the problem and find the hacker. Someone passed his plea along to members of Anonymous. Soon after, an unidentified hacker or hackers tracked down a suspect, a 35-year-old man in Madrid.

Bruce passed the intel along to police in Spain.

"Two or three people picked it up and, as I understand, they contacted some top hackers in a group called Anonymous," he told the Herald.

In an attempt to gain the collective's approval, the hacker instead drew its ire.

"Apparently, one of the rules is you don't hack charity sites, you don't hack sites of people trying to help kids. This guy was trying to impress them, to try and get into their group and boasting about what he'd done — but they turned on him, they chased him."

But Bruce and the charity are still taking a hit. The site will be down for at least a month as Bruce pays to get it repaired.

"In bringing down the site he was bringing down a charity, basically," Bruce said.

In Canada, Anonymous is suspected of taking down government sites to oppose the Tory government's Internet surveillance law. Globally, it attacked FBI, Universal Music and Recording Industry Association of America sites to protest the shutdown of illegal file-sharing service Megaupload.


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