Cryptospherians, please welcome back Crypto-pal @GonzoPhD, who has offered up this false-flag operation as an instructional example of internet fail. It originally appeared on the Grey Coat Labs blog. Don’t poke the Internet Hate Machine or you’ll have worse problems than a bad car loan, folks.
In my inbox recently, I was treated to an odd URL. This URL, http://repoanon.com/ purported to be from the internet boogeymen-cum-hacker collective known as Anonymous.
Here’s the text, for your LOL reading pleasure:
“uni·ty noun \ˈyü-nə-tē\
: the state of being in full agreement
OUR OBJECTIVE (Also, lol a-holes, get it right or go home!)
It is the goal of “the” [ed. note: “The” = ROFLMAO] Anonymous to bring unity to the repossession industry to bring back the direct lender relationship and to have our industry thrive again. As you all know we are being asked to cut keys for free, take pictures for free and much more. We are also being handed contracts that are one sided and that are not in the favor of the repossession industry. We have been told by many forwarders that this is the industry standard. And it has been this way for far too long.
I ask you if we are the industry then how is this the standard. We must unite together and stand up against our adversaries and not allow them to dictate how we do business any longer. 15 years ago if I told you this was your future you would have laughed and maybe even mocked me. But now it’s reality. It’s here. The one encouraging thing I can say to you, is (that) it’s not over. It’s simply the beginning of a revolution. LPR companies like DRN are encouraging the forwarding industry and then lenders that recovery rates like $275.00 is all it cost to get the job done. We all know that $275.00 doesn’t build a business and in most cases doesn’t even pay the overhead, or buy crack. Seriously. We’re not lil’ Wayne, shitlords.
The anonymous over the next 18 months will tear down walls that have been put up to divide our industry and repair the bridges that some thought were burned forever. My brothers and my sisters we have not lost this struggle, it is time to stand up and engage in this fight. We are Anonymous.”***
[Author’s note: ***The above are also appear to possibly be union busters & “right to work” tryhard trolls, but certainly not de facto “Anonymous”…]
Included in this page were the obligatory picture of the ever-ominous Guy Fawkes mask, which, with the black background are supposed to instill some sort of uncomfortable feeling that a decentralized hacker collective is about to get involved with the automotive repossession industry.
An industry, I might note, that brings to the mind of most consumers not hacking and technology, but more like guys named “Big Phil” who, covered in tattoos and grease, and driving a tow truck, slim jim’s a car door in the ghetto in the middle of the night and makes off with a seven year old Hyundai that was sold to the debtor at several times it’s actual retail value and at 39% A.P.R.
The diction used in the above post is a poor ripoff of the usual speech patterns of the Anonymous Collective. Anonymous does not speak of itself as “The Anonymous”, and they are generally far more literate than the poster of the above missive. The above reads like a parody, written by a shill with no real experience in what Anonymous is, what it stands for, or even how it writes press releases. It reads like a bad blog post by an industry actor, who tried and failed pathetically to name drop a hacking collective to gain the attention of his peers to issues he/they have issues with. All in all, it’s a massive, as they say on the internet, “Epic Fail”.
Co-opting the name “Anonymous” is nothing new. Nation state actors like the Chinese APT (Advanced Persistent Threat) hacking teams have long used “Anonymous” imagery, as have Middle Eastern bad actors in attempts to obscure their identities and confuse their adversaries when committing cyber intrusions. This is the first time, however, that I have seen Anonymous imagery used in what appears to possibly be some sort of union, or anti-union action by what is clearly a U.S. corporation or concern.
Let’s look at some details. The WHOIS for repoanon.com shows it was registered on November 30, 2014. The registrar details, of course, are “Private”.
The Server Type: Apache mod_fcgid/2.3.10-dev so, nothing earth-shattering there. They’re hosted by a major service, GoDaddy, and there are almost 1500 other sites hosted on their box. So whoever came up with this wonky idea, covered their tracks in the most basic of ways.
Which is not to say they can’t be “unmasked”, but that’s clearly not worth bothering with, given the laughable subject matter.
As the group known as Anonymous has gained popularity for their social justice “operations”, their imagery has also become co-opted and diluted beyond anything the originators would have ever considered. It won’t be long before Burger King tells McDonald’s to “Expect Us!” And when that happens you can officially stick a fork in the social movement known as “Anonymous”, it’ll be all done and ready to put out to pasture.
It’s always fun to explore new exploitations and mutations of Anonymous.
This qualifies simply as an exploitative, sad name grab and nothing more. The people behind this could have easily done some research and made this at least look convincing, but I suspect that turning on “spell check” was taxing enough for them.
Another day, another LOL!
– Res Ipsa Loquitur
Featured Image by UbiquitousAnon on Twitter