Darkode Forum Forced Offline

After an investigation carried out by authorities in 20 countries a notorious hacking forum called Darkode, used by Lizard Squad and other cyber criminals, has been shut down.

One of the US state attorneys involved in the case said: "We have dismantled a cyber-hornets' nest... which was believed by many, including the hackers themselves, to be impenetrable."

28 arrests were made including a 26 year old man from Coventry, England.

Dozens of other people linked to the site had been charged, or had their property searched as part of the inquiry.

Darkode was allegedly used for the trading and sharing of hacking tools and information, including details of zero-day attacks.

The information was all password-protected.

The NCA explained: "Only those proposed for membership by an existing user could join, but not until they posted a resume of the skills and achievements that could contribute to the criminal community.

"There was a hierarchical membership structure, and the status of users determined who they could communicate with, and their access to the commodities and services on offer."

Security blogger Brian Krebs extensively profiled the Darkode site and published many screenshots on his site.

He said the forum's visitors included members of Lizard Squad - a group of hackers which has carried out high profile attacks on firms such as Sony, Microsoft and many others.

He added: "The guy that was most recently the admin of the forum used the nickname Sp3c.

"He was a leading member of the Lizard Squad. What's interesting is that you don't see his name in the lists of those that were apprehended or charged as part of this.

"I don't really know what that means, but there was a definite connection between the Lizard Squad and this forum, at least in the last year or so."

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