The hackers who defaced police department websites in Boston and Alabama did so in support of the Occupy Boston movement, and to protest the Boston Police for what they perceive as unprovoked violence against demonstrators. There's another, decidedly less righteous reason behind their attacks, however: they were bored.
The hack, according to Wired, replaced the websites of the Boston Police Patrolmen's Association (BPPA) the Baldwin County Sheriff's office in Alabama and the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) with an anti-police rap video.
Claiming responsibility for the attacks is the AntiSec hacking movement, an offshoot of the Anonymous hacking group. In the past, AntiSec has made its social agenda felt by launching online campaigns against controversial political figures such as Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe and U.S. law enforcement agencies such as the Arizona Department of Public Safety, in retaliation for Arizona's controversial immigration laws.
The hackers dumped the names and passwords of at least 2,000 members of the BPPA, the union that represents Boston police officers. From the Alabama Sheriff's office, the hackers exposed names, addresses, phone numbers and Social Security numbers. The hackers also made public 600 MB of data stolen from the IACP, including names and addresses.
The security firm Sophos obtained a recording of a call made to one of the hacked law enforcement agencies, in which the hacker, speaking with a British accent, tells the officer he performed the hack because he "got a bit bored."
(Sophos' senior technology consultant, Graham Cluley, writes that the call was placed to the BPPA, but it's possible, given the officer's accent, that Cluley was mistaken and the recording is from the Alabama Sheriff's office.)
The hacker taunts the officer, laughing at him when the officer says he's going to trace the call, obtain a warrant and put him in jail.
"I'm going to get on a plane in the next few minutes and head that way, start looking for you somewhere," the officer tells the caller, to which the hacker replies, "Bring it on."