Share this story
Close X
Switch to Desktop Site

Cyberattacks Q&A: 'World of pain' for those who don't support WikiLeaks

Gregg Housh, an unofficial spokesman for Anonymous, explains how the hactivist collective's voluntary botnet was powerful enough to bring down Visa and MasterCard websites.

About these ads

This is the second installment in a two-part interview. Read the first part.

Gregg Housh is an unofficial spokesman for Anonymous, a loosely knit collective of hackers who have come to the defense of WikiLeaks and its embattled founder Julian Assange.

Mr. Housh, 34, says he has stepped forward as a media contact in part because his name is already well-known to authorities due to past work with Anonymous and his three months in federal prison, as a teenager, for software piracy. He is intimately aware of, but claims no participation in, an Anonymous offensive dubbed "Operation Payback," which managed this week to take down the websites of MasterCard, Visa, and the Swedish government – all organizations that have refused support for WikiLeaks or Mr. Assange.

Housh sat with the Monitor on Dec. 10 – in what he called his 37th interview of the day – and described his role within Anonymous and the goals of the unnamed hactivists who call themselves "Anons."

CSM: Who funds Anonymous? Do any 'Anons' have deep pockets?

GH: I wish. Our servers are always having trouble getting paid every month and things like that. ... It's not that expensive but a lot of these kids running these sites are college kids. We wish there were some big deep pockets. But there aren’t. There haven’t been yet. You know, who knows in the future, especially with this type of stuff going on and all this press coverage. Someone might show up and say "What needs funding?" We would love that.

CSM: If there were some deep pockets, potentially they might have the capacity to buy an involuntary botnet and participate in the attacks that way.


Page 1 of 4

Follow Stories Like This
Get the Monitor stories you care about delivered to your inbox.