Anonymous Hacked New York's Board of Elections Website to Protest the World Cup

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The New York State Board of Elections' new look
In the unlikely event that you tried to visit New York State Board of Elections
official website today, you probably noticed that it didn't work. And if you were up early enough, you would have seen that the site briefly got a bit of a makeover, courtesy of our hacktivist friends at Anonymous, who are protesting the reported human rights abuses taking place in Brazil in advance of the FIFA World Cup, set to begin Thursday.

Hackers News Bulletin reports that Anonymous members from both Brazil and abroad are planning to hack a number of websites to protest the World Cup. Many Brazilians are furious about the $11 billion pricetag associated with hosting the game, and angry too that many of the nation's poorest citizens have been rousted from their homes in an apparent attempt to "clean up" the country's most populous cities before they get an influx of visitors. Amnesty International has expressed concern that the Brazilian government, which last year detained and injured hundreds of protesters during demonstrations over transit hikes, will use the Cup as an excuse to crack down further on their citizenry. Sao Paulo's transit workers are currently in the fifth day of a general strike, and the Guardian reports that the police have already used teargas to subdue protesters.

It's unclear what the New York State Board of Elections has to do with any of that. But early this morning, an Anonymous-affiliated Twitter handle, Autonomous Operations, tweeted this:

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Former Hacker Hector "Sabu" Monsegur Gets Time Served After "Extraordinary" Cooperation With Feds

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Monsegur in 2012.
In June of 2011, over the course of a single day, Hector "Sabu" Monsegur went from being one of the most prolific hackers affiliated with Anonymous and offshoot group Lulzsec to helping the FBI bring them down. In Federal District Court in Manhattan yesterday, Monsegur, who was potentially facing two years in prison for his own hacking activities, was sentenced instead to time served, in light of what court documents and Judge Loretta A. Preska called his "extraordinary" cooperation with federal authorities.

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Judge in Jeremy Hammond Case Won't Recuse Herself

Jeremy Hammond is facing 30 years to life in the Stratfor hacking case.
Jeremy Hammond loped into a federal courtroom in Lower Manhattan this morning with an awkward gait, his wrists handcuffed before him and his ankles shackled tightly together. Dressed in a navy blue prison jumpsuit, Hammond, the 27-year-old activist and hacker, is facing 30-years-to-life on charges related to the hacking of corporate spy agency Strategic Forecasting, or Stratfor. He has been held without bail in the Metropolitan Correction Center for more than a year, and has spent much of the past month in solitary confinement.

Hammond's trial is still many months away, but he was in court today for a hearing on whether Chief District Judge Loretta Preska should recuse herself from hearing his case. Preska is married to Thomas Kavaler, a lawyer and former client of Stratfor, whose email and encrypted password were leaked in the Stratfor hack of which Hammond is accused. Kavaler is a partner at Cahill Gordon & Reindell LLP -- where Preska was also a partner before becoming a judge -- a firm that has represented more than 20 victims of the hack.

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The People Trying To Ruin The Internet: Mel Watt

At the Voice, we have been regularly following internet policy developments. We figured it would be cool -- maybe even a public service? -- to ID people who keep pushing for web-killing proposals such as SOPA and PIPA in this new, occasional feature: "The People Trying To Ruin The Internet." Enjoy!

Rep. Mel Watt (D-North Carolina) is proof that you can be the ranking member of the judiciary subcommittee on intellectual property, competition, and the internet without being much of an intellectual.

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The People Trying To Ruin The Internet: Lamar Smith

Heard of CISPA?

On April 26, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 248-168 in favor of the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, which encourages companies such as Facebook to freely share your info with cops if you seem like a "cyber threat" and basically grants them legal immunity if they do so. President Barack Obama has promised to veto the measure, saying it doesn't do enough to protect the nation's critical systems from cyber attacks, and "would erode consumer privacy rights." It's unclear whether the prospective legislation will ultimately become law. It is clear, however, that the CISPA saga sounds super familiar. (SOPA/PIPA shitshow, anyone?)

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Are The Anonymous, LulzSec Arrests a Win for the FBI?

Categories: Anonymous

News broke earlier today that five individuals supposedly associated with Anonymous have been charged for attacks on websites ranging from the CIA to Strafor, and some are saying that it's a triumph for the FBI's fight against the hackivist collective.

And because the FBI might have gotten intel from a former Anonymous member, some think that the organization has been permanently damaged.

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Feds Push Extradition of Megaupload's Kim Dotcom

The Feds are moving forward with plans to extradite Kim Dotcom to the U.S. from New Zealand, filing court papers on Monday.

Cops brought down the Megaupload founder in January, nabbing him on charges relating to the file-sharing stalwart in a tumultuous, made-for-tabloid arrest -- that was coordinated in part by the country's anti-terror squad.

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BREAKING: Anonymous Claims to Take Down CIA Website

Runnin' Scared just got word from Anonymous's Twitter feed that the hacktivist group has taken down the Central Intelligence Agency's website, writing: "CIA TANGO DOWN: #Anonymous (via @RT_America)"

As of 3:53 p.m., the CIA's website does not appear to be working.

Anonymous also claims to have hacked the Mexican Ministry of Mines today.

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BitTorrent-Based Internet Piracy Does Not Hurt U.S. Movie Sales: Study

As the movie and music industries continue to bemoan internet piracy -- and push for internet-censoring laws like SOPA, PIPA, and the TPP to curb illegal file sharing -- a new academic study has come out that debunks a major belief about piracy and profit loss.

In "Reel Piracy: The Effect of Online Film Piracy on International Box Office Sales," researchers from Wellesley College and the University of Minnesota came to some not-so-starling conclusions (h/t TorrentFreak.)

The researchers decided that the introduction of BitTorrent in 2003 has, in fact, impacted box office sales abroad -- by at least 7 percent -- but that piracy has actually been prompted by distributers' own manipulation of the movie markets.

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Anonymous's 'Fuck FBI Friday' Campaign Hits Department of Homeland Security

And now for a very quick recap before Runnin' Scared signs off for the night: Anonymous has intercepted and leaked a call between the FBI and Scotland Yard, but it's hardly the only thing the group has been up to in its latest Fuck FBI Friday.

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