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Spam king Avanesov senteced to 4 years in jail

Russian cybercrime mastermind Georgy Avanesov was found guilty of computer sabotage by an Armenian court on Tuesday and sentenced to four years in prison. The trial is monumental, not only for the sentencing of a criminal who hijacked millions of computers, but also because it is reportedly the country’s first conviction of a computer criminal. Arrested in 2010, 27-year-old Avanesov is famous for creating the Bredolab botnet. Bredolab refers to the name of the virus Avanesov used to quietly access unsuspecting computers, mainly through a backdoor created when a user opened a malicious email, and was responsible for spamming, spreading malware and carrying out anti-virus attacks. At its peak, the Bredolab botnet sent out 3.6 million junk mail messagesper day. Avanesov also rented out access to the network of zombie computers to other hackers, reportedly earning about 100,000 euros a month.

In the 25-page indictment, the prosecution said Avanesov developed the Bredolab in Armenia and used computer servers in Holland and France to spread the virus. Avanesov’s criminal enterprise was compromised in October 2010, when Dutch authorities took control of the botnet, seizing and disconnecting 143 computer servers. Avanesov was arrested at the Armenia’s Zvartnots International Airport the next day,flying in from Moscow.

Source: Huffington Post

Anti-piracy warning on DVDs now twice as long

Hollywood and the federal government have partnered to create updated and even more annoying anti-piracy warnings that will be included in new home-release DVDs and Blu-ray discs beginning this week, the government said Tuesday. The new warnings now have three scary logos intended to deter those who might violate copyright law by making a back-up copy, ripping a movie to a tablet-friendly file, uploading it to a peer-to-peer network or make illegal copies to send to military service members in Iraq.

The original logo has been included since 2004 on the Motion Picture Association of America members’ movies, with the now-famous FBI tough-talking “anti-piracy warning label” which cautions customers who legitimately purchased a movie about the criminal penalties for copyright infringement. Added alongside the FBI’s logo in the new version, however, is a Homeland Security Investigations “special agent” badge. That reflects the agency’s new power, handed down in 2008, to seize web domains engaged in infringing activity under the same forfeiture laws used to seize property like houses, cars and boats allegedly tied to illegal activity such as drug running or gambling.

What’s more, as an added bonus that’s even better than a James Cameron director commentary, movie fans will be treated with a second annoying screen (above) touting the National Intellectual Property Center. That screen, like the others, presumably will be made unskippable during viewing. The warning says, “Piracy is not a victimless crime. For more information on how digital theft harms the economy, please visit www.iprcenter.gov.” The center’s logo is tough, too, with a hawk clenching a banner that reads “Protection Is Our Trademark”.

Source: Wired

Leading hackers of LulzSec arrested

The laughs are reportedly over for five top members of the hacker group LulzSec who were arrested on Tuesday and charged as part of a conspiracy case filed in New York federal court. FoxNews.com reports that the arrests were part of a multinational sting across the United Kingdom, Ireland and the United States on Tuesday morning, and LulzSec leader Hector Xavier Monsegur, who operated online under the alias “Sabu,” provided the Federal Bureau of Investigation with information leading to the arrests. According to the report, Monsegur has been working with the FBI for months. “This is devastating to the organization,” an FBI official told FoxNews.com. “We’re chopping off the head of LulzSec.”

LulzSec, which became part of the larger hacker collective “Anonymous Operations” last year, has launched a number of high profile cyberattacks since last summer. The group’s first widely reports attacks targeted a number of digital properties belonging to Sony, and more than 1 million accounts were compromised as a result of the group’s efforts. The group also waged war on the U.S. government, and encouraged other hackers to ”open fire on any government or agency that crosses their path.” This brazen move may have intensified the FBI’s efforts to take down the organization, as a series of arrests were made soon after operation “AntiSec” began.

LulzSec leader Hector Monsegur reportedly pleaded guilty to a dozen hacking-related charges on August 15th last year, and his ensuing cooperation with the FBI’s investigation will likely earn him a reduced sentence. ”They caught him and he was secretly arrested and now works for the FBI,” a unnamed source said to be close to Sabu told FoxNews.com. The five men arrested on Tuesday as a result of Monsegur’s cooperation include Ryan Ackroyd, aka “Kayla” and Jake Davis, aka “Topiary,” of London, England; Darren Martyn, aka “pwnsauce” and Donncha O’Cearrbhail, aka “palladium,” of Ireland; and Jeremy Hammond aka “Anarchaos,” of Chicago, Illinois. Further details are expected to be released later in the day.

Source: BGR.com

Cyberlocker Ecosystem Shocked As Big Players Take Drastic Action

In the wake of last week’s Megaupload shutdown, some of the biggest names in the market are taking drastic action. During the last 48 hours many sites have completely withdrawn their systems for paying uploaders when their files are shared with others, but one of the most dramatic moves came first from Filesonic and today Fileserve. Both services now forbid people from downloading any files they didn’t upload themselves.

(Read the article)

Filesonic Kills File-Sharing Service After MegaUpload Arrests

Filesonic, one of the Internet’s leading cyberlocker services, has taken some drastic measures following the Megaupload shutdown and arrests last week. In addition to discontinuing its affiliates rewards program and not yet paying accrued money to members, the site has disabled all sharing functionality, leaving users only with access to their own files.

(Read the article)

8 MegaUpload & MegaVideo alternatives

If you haven’t been living under a rock in last 2 days you probably know something big happened in our small filesharing pond – MegaUpload, the world’s 15th biggest website was shut down by FBI and all owners and people affiliated with MegaUpload, MegaVideo and many other services run by the company were arrested. We covered this news in our early blog post. Later, the famous group of hackers Anonymous launchd DDoS attack against FBI, MPAA, RIAA and other antipiracy organizations and the successfully shut down their websites. However the attack lasted just few hours and the sites are becoming slowly accessible again, so this manifestation didn’t really have big impact. The case is still evolving, you can check latest pics of property of Kim Shmitz, owner of MegaUpload, being seized from his villa, including his collection of luxurious cars with words like MAFIA, CEO or HACKER on their number plates.

With MegaUpload down, many people will look for alternatives for this popular filesharing platform. Here’s a list of our tips, including short description. What’s more, many of those hosts allow you to earn some extra revenue by sharing your files – you get a couple of cents for every download, so if you have popular files, you can earn few dollars here and there by sharing various files. Most of these hosts allow upload from FTP and remote servers.

1. FileSonic – the most popular filesharing platform allowing you to earn revenue. The free accounts are limited to download speed around 250 kB/s with few seconds of waiting before the download. You can earn up to $35 for 1000 downloads with its affiliate program or up to $15 for sale of one Premium account.

2. FileServe – second most popular host for sharing your files, popular mostly with American users. Offers stable and fairly fast download speed from US, not so fast for European users. Allows 500 GB of storage for free, if you need more you can get it after purchasing Premium account. As a FileServer partner you can earn up to $25 for 1000 file downloads.

3. FileJungle – relatively new player on the filesharing field with nice interface, detailed stats and various affiliate plans. Uploaders can choose between revenue sharing model, up to $40 per 1000 downloads plan or fixed $10 comission for every sold Premium account. Fast mainly for US users. 30 seconds waiting time before download and storage of 750 GB for free users.

4. FilePost – FilePost is also pretty new service which offers maximum size of 2 GB, fairly fast download speed for all users and 30 days for keeping inactive files. Affiliates can benefit from Mixed plan combining earnings of up to $40 for 1000 downloads and 60% revenue share including rebills.

5. UploadStation – UploadStation also started in 2011 but it never become extremely popular, although it offers nice set of services and features. Nice user interface, upload of files up to 2 GB, 500 GB storage for free registered users and payment of up to $32 for 1000 downloads for uploaders.

6. RapidShare – the legend of filesharing industry, site that started it all. After many legal problems, RapidShare now offers no affiliate program but instead offers the fastest download speeds for free users (no problem to reach 10 MB/s), especially those from Europe, unlimited storage, unlimited maximum filesize and much more.

7. VideoBB – VideoBB is pretty new yet extremely popular video service which is on the good way to replace MegaVideo as #1 online streaming platform. It’s already 375th most popular website in the world according to Alexa and with their 1000 GB of free video storage, nice streaming client and wide set of features they quickly established themselves in online video business. Premium accounts offer faster streaming/download speed, unlimited views, no advertisements and possibility to download the video.

8. MediaFire – also very popular uploading platform for many years, MediaFire offers unlimited file size, unlimited downloads and basically no ads. The sites boasts with impressive 150 million monthly users.

Anonymous strikes back: MPAA, RIAA, FBI, BMI and others down after DDoS

http://images.sodahead.com/polls/001541659/1350968676_anonymous_xlarge.gifFor the past few days the big story has been the protest of SOPA and PIPA, the two potentially disastrous and dangerous pieces of legislation that would give major corporations and organizations the right to censor the internet in the name of protection against piracy. Yesterday, websites like Wikipedia.org and Reddit.com shut their doors to the public, demonstrating what it would be like if either SOPA or PIPA were passed, despite admonishment from the MPAA. In a move that can only be described as retaliation, earlier this morning the US government was able to shut down MegaUpload.com a file sharing website that some have chosen to use to download and upload illegal material (despite the fact that the site itself has no control over the content people share). Now Anonymous, the nameless, faceless hacker organization that is typically identified with Guy Fawkes masks, has struck back.

Since this morning’s news, Anonymous has managed to shut down various powerful websites in the government such as Justice.gov along with others like MPAA.org, Universal Music Group, and the RIAA. The move is being called the biggest attack in the organization’s history. Anonymous is likely using what is known as a Distributed Denial-of-Service Attack (DDoS), which basically means that they have flooded the computer network that operates these various sites and completely shut down their capabilities.

The AnonOps Twitter account claimed responsibility for the attacks, which are being promoted with the #OpMegaUpload hashtag. Anonymous is using their own DDoS tool called Low Orbit Ion Cannon (LOIC). When activated, LOIC rapidly reloads a target website, and if enough users point LOIC at a site at once, it can crash from the traffic. The application is freely being distributed through Twitter and various IRC channels. Judging from a Twitter search, the link is being shared at a rate of about 4 times a minute, mostly by Spanish-speaking users, for some reason. Russian news service RT claims this is the largest coordinated attack in Anonymous’ history—over 5,600 DDoS zealots blasting at once. The latest confirmed targeted shut down by Anonymous attack is La résistance est international—French copyright authority HADOPI.

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