Anonymous Dismantled? FBI Agent Says Arrests Have ‘Added Layer of Distrust’ in Hacking Group

August 21, 2013 Updated: July 18, 2015

A FBI agent says last years arrests of five members of a splinter hacker group has sowed distrust in Anonymous, the infamous and famous hacker collective, and that there isn’t as much action coming from the group.

“The movement is still there, and they’re still yacking on Twitter and posting things, but you don’t hear about these guys coming forward with those large breaches,” Austin Berglas, assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s cyber division in New York, told the Huffington Post. “It’s just not happening, and that’s because of the dismantlement of the largest players.”

Anonymous has targeted a range of corporations and organizations over the last several years, including the New York Stock Exchange and the FBI.

But there has been less action from the group recently, which comes from the arrests of five members of Lulz Security, a splinter group, last year. The arrests were made with the help of an informant, Hector Monsegur or “Sabu,” who was caught then cooperated with the FBI.

“All of these guys [arrested] were major players in the Anonymous movement, and a lot of people looked to them just because of what they did,” Berglas said.

However, Anonymous remains very much a force to be reckoned with, said Gabriella Coleman, a professor at McGill University who studies Anonymous. 

“They could easily emerge again as a force to contend with,” she told the Huffington Post in an email, while adding that there is “no doubt” that the arrests dealt a major blow to the group.

Anonymous posted on Twitter the article and highlighted part of one quote “FBI Agent: #Anonymous Still yacking on Twitter.” The main account has over 1 million followers and other related accounts of hundreds of thousands more.

A following post conveyed that the group doesn’t like government around the world, and they added hashtagged words: “#RiseUp” and “#Revolt.”


Follow Zachary on Twitter: @zackstieber