CYBERSPACE—Child pornography has always been with us, from early photographs to homemade movies to "underground" videotapes to early uses of the internet—but now, the "hacktivist" group known as Anonymous has turned part of its energies to ferreting out the "darknet" online traders of the material, and boy, did they hack a doozy of a site!
Anonymous's most recent target had been the darknet site "Lolita City," part of Freedom Hosting, which it hacked into on Tuesday as part of "Operation Darknet," though the group has claimed credit for taking down over 40 Freedom Hosting child porn sites, and has announced that it "will soon target all firms hosting, promoting or supporting child pornography."
"Our demands are simple," wrote an Anonymous member. "Remove all child pornography content from your servers. Refuse to provide hosting services to any website dealing with child pornography. This statement is not just aimed at Freedom Hosting, but everyone on the Internet. It does not matter who you are, if we find you to be hosting, promoting, or supporting child pornography, you will become a target."
In fact, after its warnings regarding child porn were ignored, Anonymous hacked Freedom Hosting, to which the group had traced "the largest collection of child pornography on the Internet," and completely shut down its services to its clients "due to their lack of action to remove child pornography from their server."However, the ISP was up and running again within 24 hours.
However, what makes the Lolita City hack so interesting is that, after sifting through its files of visitors who could have looked at over 100GB of child porn images, Anonymous extracted the names of 1,589 child porn users and published the results on Pastebin.com. Some users included "redhotchily", "ahoymatie," "PantyhosePedo," "jailbaitfukr" and "PureEvil."
"After hours of researching the users dump from Lolita City, we have found documents and identified many of the users," an Anonymous member, "Arson," wrote. "If the FBI, Interpol, or other law enforcement agency should happen to come across this list, please use it to investigate and bring justice to the people listed here."
Writer Violet Blue has covered the story in more depth here.