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FBI Targets Anonymous Suspects

The FBI has served over 40 search warrants in the US as part of its investigation into cyber attacks launched in support of whistle-blowing site WikiLeaks.

In a statement, the FBI said that the warrants were issued as part of an investigation carried out in conjunction with international law enforcement agencies into the recent string of distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks orchestrated by online collective Anonymous against major companies and organisations.

The National Cyber-Forensics and Training Alliance, a public-private partnership that works to neutralise cyber crime, is also helping with the investigations, the bureau said.

According to the FBI, major anti-virus firms are instituting updates to detect Anonymous’ weapon of choice, the Low Orbit Ion Cannon (LOIC) - used to launch the DDoS barrages- and has warned people against participating in future attacks.

“The FBI also is reminding the public that facilitating or conducting a DDoS attack is illegal, punishable by up to 10 years in prison, as well as exposing participants to significant civil liability,” is said.

The news follows the arrest of five Brits suspected to have been involved in the attacks by UK police. The five, aged 15, 16, 19, 20 and 26, have been granted bail, the Metropolitan Police said on Friday. The three teens will have to report to the police on 13 April and the two men the next day.