Web Intelligence Shows Early Signs of OpNSA Cyber Campaign, DDoS Attacks Planned for November 5
The U.S. National Security Agency’s website was down for roughly 11 hours on Friday. The agency says the downtime was caused by an error during a routine website update; others believe the NSA was hacked ahead of anti-government surveillance protests in Washington, D.C. on Saturday.
Web intelligence shows members of Anonymous clearly promoting the physical protests prior to Saturday (the Recorded Future alert shown below was delivered on October 11), and we know that efforts by hacktivists are closely tied to campaigns by activists on the ground. The dates of October 26 and November 5 have been visible in Anonymous circles for weeks.
The timeline shows tweets forewarning protests, cyber and kinetic, against the NSA this past weekend as well as on November 5. The demonstration that saw thousands protest in DC on October 26 was known of weeks in advance.
As evidenced by the timeline above, this isn’t the end of hacktivism targeting the NSA. Tweets from over the weekend using the hashtags #OpNSA and #OpPRISM are recruiting and promoting plans for DDoS attacks against the agency on November 5. Whether Friday’s incident was truly an internal error or actually a successful hack, more disruption is on the way.