This is an old story (where old > 2 weeks), but I still want to write about it.
Nine months ago, I wrote a post where LulzSec decided, after 9 weeks of mischief, to call it quits. This was in June, 2011.
About three weeks ago, the FBI announced that they had caught one of the top hackers in the group who used the handle Sabu. He had been secretly working with the FBI since then and had been turning over whatever information he had on other group members (most likely in exchange for a plea for lesser jail time).
I like SecurityNewsDaily’s take on this in their article Despite Being Anonymous, Hacktivist Sabu Wasn’t Hard to Find:
The most interesting thing about Tuesday’s news that the prominent Anonymous hacker known as Sabu had been cooperating with the FBI was that his true identity was no surprise.
Since late June of 2011, after his initial arrest and just about when his LulzSec crew ended its seven-week hacking campaign, Sabu had been thought to be a New York man of Puerto Rican ancestry with leftist leanings. (The original Sabu was a wrestler popular during the 1990s.)
Monsegur’s family was even profiled in the New York Times in October 2007 as part of a feature about people who had been barred from public housing for drug offenses. The Times story said Monsegur’s father, also known as Hector Monsegur, and the elder Monsegur’s sister had been caught and convicted of dealing heroin in 1997.
According to this week’s media reports, the younger Monsegur continues to live in his grandmother’s apartment in the Jacob Riis Houses on Avenue D in Manhattan’s Alphabet City, along with younger siblings, his girlfriend and his girlfriend’s two children.
An FBI official confirmed to SecurityNewsDaily that the authorities had known Monsegur’s name and address long before his arrest, but waited until they had enough evidence before knocking on his door.
I’ve snipped out many pieces from the article, but other hackers had outed his identity a few months prior to his arrest.
LulzSec caused a lot of mayhem in its heyday last year. If you look at Monsegur, he doesn’t look particularly threatening in terms of where he lived and the resources at his disposal. However, the things he did have was plenty of spare time and better-than-average computer skills, as well as a hactivist streak.
Unfortunately for other members of the hacking underground, like just about anyone else in the world, when confronted with criminal penalties for his actions, his instincts for self-preservation kicked and he decided it would be best to help his own case by turning in others rather than his own cause by staying silent.
The impact of Sabu’s unveiling has already been felt in the hacktivist world. Barrett Brown, an unofficial Anonymous spokesman, wrote on Twitter this morning that the FBI has raided his apartment. He ended his tweet with, "Sabu is a traitor" [quote taken from this article].