US-UK law enforcement investigate hacked phone conversation

The hacking group Anonymous has released an audio recording of a January phone conversation between American and British law enforcement personnel. It seems that detectives were discussing alleged hackers then under surveillance. In a statement, the FBI said that the “information was intended for law enforcement officers only and was illegally obtained. A criminal investigation is under way to identify and hold accountable those responsible.”

The conference call was hosted by the FBI and involved multiple law enforcement agencies around the world. According to an email also released by Anonymous, the call was to be an opportunity to discuss efforts to combat the hacktivist group, as well as splinter groups Lulzsec and Antisec.

The hackers had posted the call on YouTube. According to one of the suspects’ attorney, the audio file had apparently been taken from an intercepted email; the hackers had not eavesdropped on the call itself.

The incident was one of several recently instigated by hackers claiming to be affiliated with Anonymous. Law enforcement websites in Boston and Salt Lake City were disrupted by cyber attacks last week, and the Greek justice ministry’s page was also brought down. In at least some cases, the attacks were meant to be political protests addressing issues ranging from the Occupy Wall Street movement to international copyright law.

The BBC’s report can be found here.

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