- For immediate release - 

July 8, 1998


The Electronic Disturbance Theater, a group of computerized artists/activists and developers of FloodNet software, issues today the following statement of support for the young British hacker, known as "JF", who recently hacked into and placed anti-nuclear messages in over 300 web sites. 

    1) we support the actions of JF the young British hacker who placed anti-nuclear messages on over 300 web sites. 

    2) we believe this type of political hacking IS a valid form of political expression and that it is NOT cyber-terrorism as some governments would lead us to believe. 

    3) we think that people like JF should be honored, praised, and respected for having the courage and will to take this sort of action. 

    4) we urge others with high moral consciences and software capability to follow JF's lead.


Ricardo Dominguez, New York, NY, http://www.thing.net/~rdom/ 
Carmin Karasic, Boston, MA, http://custwww.xensei.com/users/carmin/ 
Paco Nathan, Austin, TX, http://www.fringeware.com/ 
Brett Stalbaum, San Jose, CA, http://switch.sjsu.edu/web/v3n3/JTDDS/index.html 
Stefan Wray, New York, NY, http://www.nyu.edu/projects/wray/projects/ecd.html 


If you support the above statement of the Electronic Disturbance Theater and would like to add your name or your group's name to the list of signatories, please send that information along with your web site address to: sjw210@is8.nyu.edu 

When we have accumulated what seems to be an appropriate number of co-signers to this statement of support for "JF" we will release this to British and international media. 


For extensive coverage of the ongoing actions of "JF" and his allies, set your browser to: http://www.antionline.com/ 

See the most recent information below. 

Anti-Nuke Cracker Strikes Again 
by James Glave for Wired news 
5:08pm 3.Jul.98.PDT 
An 18-year-old member of the anti-nuclear cracker group that last month 
wreaked havoc with email and Web servers at India's atomic research center 
has struck again with another Internet political protest. 

In what may be the largest "mass hack" ever undertaken, the cracker, who goes 
by the name "JF," along with a number of anonymous colleagues, simultaneously 
defaced more than 300 Web sites late Thursday. The group replaced the sites' 
homepages with an image of a mushroom cloud and an anti-nuclear screed. 

"This mass takeover goes out to all the people out there who want to see 
peace in this world," read the 800-word declaration that graced an eclectic 
mix of general interest, entrepreneur, adult, sport, and fan sites until early 
Friday morning. 

Affected domains included sites for The World Cup, Wimbledon, The Ritz 
Casino, actor Drew Barrymore, and The Saudi Royal Family. Some of the sites 
were still defaced or down as of late Friday afternoon, when Wired News 
spoke with JF over Internet Relay Chat. 

"The year is 1998," wrote JF, who is based in England. "We should be moving 
towards world peace in the millennium, and nuclear warfare [and] testing 
is NO way forward. It can destroy the world," the teen said. 

"I'm only young; I don't want a hostile world on the edge of a nuclear 
conflict," he added. 

The mass hack happened almost by accident. While scanning a large network, 
looking for security weaknesses, JF and his colleagues came across a Web site 
hosting company called EasySpace. The firm, based in Kingston upon Thames, 
England, offers "virtual domain" hosting -- an arrangement whereby multiple 
Web sites are located on a single server. 

"We ... came across this, at first by accident, then [we] realized what it 
was, and as we were planning a mass hack, we decided to put it into 
operation," JF said. 

The teen said that he and his colleagues -- members of another group called 
Ashtray Lumberjacks -- penetrated EasySpace's network with what they claimed 
was a nonpublic attack, and ran computer code that inserted the same altered 
Web page on all the sites hosted at EasySpace. 

The entire operation was completed in approximately one hour, he said. 

EasySpace representatives declined to comment, aside from forwarding to Wired 
News a copy of the email the company sent to affected customers. 

"This attacked [sic] coincided with us preparing to move our Easypost mail 
system onto a new server and receive upgraded software," the message read in 

"We will be re-installing the operating systems of the server your Web 
site is hosted on over the weekend and will be upgrading the security. 
Apologies for any inconvenience that may have been caused," the message 

The email included instructions for customers to restore their own Web sites, 
suggesting that EasySpace had no backups of its own. 

The protest Web page bore the logo of JF's group Milw0rm. Last month, the 
same group claimed responsibility for stealing email and deleting Web 
servers at 
the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre in Bombay, India. In the latest protest 
statement, the crackers expressed their disappointment that peace talks had 
not begun on the subcontinent. 

"This tension is not good, it scares you as much as it scares us. For you all 
know that this could seriously escalate into a big conflict between India and 
Pakistan and possibly even World War III, and this CANNOT happen," the text 

John Vranesevich, founder of the computer security Web site AntiOnline, said 
that mass Web page attacks, affecting multiple sites at one time, are not 
common events. 

"Usually any Internet Service Provider that hosts such a large number of 
domains has very good security procedures in place simply because they are 
usually a larger operation," Vranesevich said. 

Vranesevich added that the group was unusual in that its members appear to be 
driven as much by politics as they are by computer security issues. 

"They're not claiming to be hacking to help progress computer security and to 
help make new exploits known. They're doing it for political reasons; it's 
not the means that's important it's the end result," Vranesevich said.