Did Jester take down UGNazi?
By now we’ve all heard of the massive FBI bust: 24 worldwide arrests and counting. Many commentators have focused on the inclusion of JoshTheGod amongst those arrested, and the closure/seizure of the UGNazi website. My own account on Infosecurity Magazine is here: FBI arrests: was UGNazi a target or an instrument?
But there’s a fascinating side-story to this. Jester, the self-proclaimed antidote to Anonymous, declared war on UGNazi on 7 June. “Within 23 days of this date,” he declared, “justice will be served.” Well, 20 days later the core UGNazi members were arrested and the website seized – leading many to suspect that Jester played some hidden part in this.
Doubtful. In fact, seriously doubtful. Jester himself, of course, drops teasers to suggest he was in the know. Yesterday, the day of the bust, he did a major update to his ‘placeholder’ web post. Headed “FBI Arrests 37 In Massive International Cyber Fraud Scheme” (I’ve seen reference to 27 elsewhere, but never 37), he says:
Teaser: If I was a gambling man I might hazard a wager on the ‘CarderProfit Forum’ being a honeypot/sting that *someone* setup. Just a wild stab in the dark you understand.
Well, yes, the FBI had just said that; but also that they shut it down last month. When such a site suddenly disappears, it is either because its been busted or never was in the first place. It’s when you actually look closely at Jester’s account you see it’s full of innuendo but little substance.
I asked the other side what they thought about Jester. “Jester,” I was told, “is a past master at the art of hacking illusion – making matters that are essentially outside of his control appear to be part of a plan that he facilitates through his own hacking powers. Through his twitter and blog, with, sleight of his hand, he pretends he has the power to take down a hacking group such as UGNAZI, releasing a combination of verifiable but less descriptive pieces of info mixed in with unknown but more descriptive pieces. In truth Jester is the more competent master of the art that Reckz0r is still learning.”
Jester, according to Anonymous, is more a master of social engineering than hacking. In this instance he was in the right place at the right time; chasing UGNazi just when the FBI was closing in. And he’ll make the most of it because that’s his skill. Oh, and one other thing: don’t confuse UGNazi with Anonymous.