Please copy and distribute.
There is a war on right now. Possibly the internet's first real war with real sides and very real consequences. An arm chair revolutionary can now take up arms without leaving the couch. In fact there is a call to arms. Haven't you heard? It has never been easier to join a war.
The Anonymous Hackers are mostly not hackers at all. Their approach has little to do with hacking. You do not need any specialist knowledge. In this current situation all you need to join them is download a piece of software and press go. You're part of the war. It's that simple. Don't be blase. The risks are real. The stakes are your right to an internet not censored by, and in the interest of, Govenrments and big business. Here is my beginners guide to becoming an online freedom fighter.
And if this is a war then trust no-one. Especially me. Go search for info and make a judgement. You may judge my post chimes with what you can glean. That's the best I can offer. When searching you might want to consider your privacy. Use the Tor browser and The IXQuick search engine for better privacy.
The IXQuick Search Engine will not record your history. Google does: http://www.ixquick.com
Disguise your IP with a proxy such as Tor. Be a good citizen. Become a relay: www.torproject.org
How does the Anonymous group work?
The Anonymous group are currently employing an innovative approach to temporarily disabling selected target websites. The technique is not sophisticated, it is effective, and it does have a new twist.
They are using a "voluntary botnet to perform Denial Of Service attacks" on the target websites.
What is a "voluntary botnet"?
A botnet is a group of computers running software controlled from a central location. i.e. One person controls software running on lots of other computers. Most often bot software is installed on the bot pc without the pc owners consent. These are viruses and your virus software combats these. However, the novel approach by Anonymous is that they are inviting people to download their botnet software. So, it has been labelled a voluntary botnet.
Any pc on the Anonymous voluntary botnet (i.e. any pc running the appropriate software) will take part in a coordinated Denial Of Service (DOS) attack.
What is a "Denial Of Service (DOS) attack"?
All the bots make multiple requests to one web address at the same time. The aim is to overload the website until it will no longer accept new connections and cease to function. Once the attack is finished the website will quickly recover and no data is stolen. It is the web equivalent of a picket line.
How many people are doing this?
The software seems to have been downloaded over 35 thousand times from the source I found. Messageboards indicate they disabled the Paypal blog using 150-300 bots.
Is the software safe?
I think so. I am a professional programmer and experienced web user. My assessment is that the software does what it says and only does what it says. I cannot see any threat to your pc. But I am no hacker and no security expert and you have no idea who I am. So it's your shout. Search the internet. Make a judgement.
Is it illegal?
Well there seems to be some debate about the legal position but you are best assuming that yes it is illegal.
Great, where can I start?
You need to know how to do basic pc stuff like windows update, run an exe, download software, identify a file.
Running on windows here is what to do. None of the softwares are illegal. You only need do the set up process once.
Set Up Your PC
1) You need at least NET Framework3.5. If you don't know then just go ahead and install. Download and run the MS NET 3.5 SP1 Update here: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/details.aspx?FamilyID=ab99342f-5d1a-413d-8319-81da479ab0d7&displaylang=en
2) Perform windows update and restart your pc.
3) You need to stop windows restricting network traffic. Download "Tpcz" from here: http://deepxw.blogspot.com/2009/01/download-latest-version.html.
4) Run "tcpz.exe". Go to the "Patch" panel. Set the Patch Memory New Value to 2000 and press Apply. Set the Patch File New Value to 2000 and press Apply. Restart your pc.
5) Download the latest (top of the list) "LOIC Hive" software from here: https://github.com/neweracracker/loic/downloads. Choose the stable version at the top (currently v184.108.40.206). You might need to search for this software by now. It's a war.
From now on you might want to remain anonymous. The technically minded should look at Tor and Proxifier. The less technical could just use someone elses connection. Take your laptop to a cafe with open intenet access. I can find no indication of how the LOIC Hive software performs on wifi. Hopefully someone will comment below. I reckon it will work depending on the cafe set up. Be prepared for everyones elses connection to stop when you start! I guess a tech savvy cafe may quickly limit your effectiveness. There might be better public access points to use. Again, hopefully someone better informed will comment below.
6) Find the "irc address" settings to be used. You need to search on the internet. This is war and everything is fluild. Search for things like "anonymous payback LOIC Hive wikileaks channel:#loic". It is out there. It may be something like: "server:lps.anonops-irc.com port:6667 channel:#loic".
7) Run loic.exe. Enter the irc details from step 6 in the top right and select "FUCKING HIVE MIND". Press the 'IMMA CHARGIN MY LASER' button under Ready.
That's it. You are at war. Possibly a real one.