Anonymous has been busy over the last day or so, working on OpFerguson, the operation designed to bring justice for slain teenager Mike Brown. He would have started college today; instead, he was shot to death by an unnamed police officer on Saturday as he held his hands in the air and shouted that he was unarmed. His body then lay on the ground for four hours before it was collected.
Anonymous wondered what the police scanners were saying for those fifteen hours.
They found out.
Now they have released a recording which they say is a tape of the St Louis police department’s scanner over the critical two hours surrounding the shooting.
Things don’t get interesting, in an OpFerguson context, until the 11 minute mark, when there is mention of a police shooting; the dispatcher hears about the shooting on the news and gets on the scanner looking for information from the Ferguson department, which responds that they don’t know anything about it. At the 44 minute mark they mention switching over to “riot channel” which is presumably not on the known scanner frequencies. The St Louis county police scanner is on Ustream and can be listened to live. The police call for “tac vehicles” at the 22 minute mark. No mention of an ambulance.
The video hit counter is stuck on 301, which YouTube videos do when they are being clicked faster than the stat counter can count. All we can say for certain is that the video has gone viral, and will doubtless be fully transcribed by sunset tonight. The widespread support Anonymous enjoyed over the past several days has only intensified as they go from operational success to success and the police continue to stall and refuse to name the officer, whom they claim is on administrative leave.
Another video has surfaced, this one purporting to be of an eyewitness account of the shooting. The number of shots mentioned in the video agrees with what the police told Brown’s mother. This video, posted Sunday, has had over 120,000 views.
As well as releasing the police dispatch recording (whose source they will not reveal) OpFerguson has had to fight on another front: organized trolls.
A Pastebin document was released purporting to be from Anonymous but actually mocking them, calling for a cessation of actions in OpFerguson. It made reference to “legendary” hacker @TH3J35T3R and his infamous weapon Xerxes, which was debunked as merely an existing DoS tool with a graphic user interface attached to make it easier to use. The Jester is, of course, notoriously anti-Anon. The paste particularly called out Commander X, a now-unmasked member of Anonymous who fled to Canada several years ago rather than stand trial in the United States for hacking. His Twitter account has been a supporter of OpFerguson activities.
You will be forced to shower, your Guy Fawkes mask will be smashed, and your flag defiled. We have collected a few dollars to get you some shaving cream, a razor and a tooth brush. Your subway dweller ways are no longer acceptable to us, nor is your blatant disregard for the Anonymous hierarchy. Commander X, consider yourself banished, disbarred, and removed from Anonymous as a whole.Please, fellow Anons worldwide, stop Ddosing, Stop defacing, Stop hacking police websites, it’s not going to do anything, You will end up in jail with the other Anons. Take notice of their mistakes and learn from them. They’re too powerful to start the revolution on such a grand scale.
Most Anons simply ignored the paste, which was aggressively pushed by only a handful of accounts. As one Anon, who wishes to remain Anonymous, told us on Twitter, “methinks the target audience was newfags [ie people who didn’t know their way around Anonymous and its dramas]. Anyone with 2 cents knew to lol @ lulz. Welcome to internetz.” A solid example of attempted social engineering in a time of emergency.
It is illegal to publish IP addresses without permission but presumably, in the Surveillance Age, not illegal to hand them over to the police without permission. The Anon-Candy battle has been going on for years but had gone relatively quiet lately. One side, if not both, must have rejoiced at the re-engagement of hostilities.
This is the actual website for OpFerguson.
Retaliation was as swift as it was predictable.
He is not, however offline. So, situation normal as far as that goes.
Meanwhile, over on Twitter at the #Anonymous hashtag, longtime robot spam accounts Jim Mockingbird, Bobby Belknap, Herbert Garrison, and Vincent Van Drone continued to tweet pound cake recipes, local news stories, and whatever else random text they could tweet out to clutter the hashtag. They tweet in coordinated fashion to form huge blocks of meaningless text on the hashtag, lowering the signal to noise ratio. Despite having been reported as spam several hundred times over the past year, they have not yet been suspended, and blocking them works only temporarily. They are also clogging #SEA, the hashtag of the Syrian Electronic Army, although whether to claim allegiance to it or to spam it is anyone’s guess.
Elsewhere, Anonymous had to back down from their dox of police chief Jon Belmar when the house in question appears to belong to a completely different man.
There will, of course, be more by morning. Some of it from the FBI and the ACLU:
Featured image via Reservoir Jesus on Twitter