LAST NIGHT, fresh from the revelation that high profile Anonymous member Sabu had been arrested and was working with the authorities, we spoke with SS, a member of Anonops, the subset of Anonymous that Sabu was close to and pushed to control.
Anonymous went wild after the news yesterday, with some accounts expressing anger and others, disappointment. For SS, or Shitstorm, the first feeling was one of sadness. Not for the hacker himself, although he will undoubtedly suffer, but for the cause.
"This is a sad day, not because Sabu is gone, but because he took others and he will probably walk free for cooperating," he said, in reference to the fact that other members of the Lulzsec splinter group have also been arrested.
As soon as the news broke, we were reminded of an earlier release from part of the hacktivist group that exposed Sabu and gave his real name of Hector Xavier Monsegu. This came out in December last year, but it and other clues were never confirmed.
SS, who told us last year that Sabu was becoming increasingly vocal, said that there were rumours that Sabu had turned, and that he was not surprised when the news finally came out. Sabu, it seems, was very good at hiding his tracks and his motives.
"Reading this news confirmed what I had thought for months, that Sabu had started to work for federal agents," he added.
"When he disappeared a while back I think a lot of people thought something was wrong. When he came back he was different."
SS said that the new Sabu who returned after a two month absence on Twitter was a different man, and one that seemed to have motives that he never had before. The new Sabu was sloppy, too.
"He was pushier. He tried to push for someone to have IRCoperator on AnonOps. This was of course denied. I remember the night that his dox were leaked, he denied them being true but I guess that this turned out to be false. It seems that the dox and his laziness of not using an anonymizer did him in," he added.
"He was respected a long time ago, but in my opinion he became arrogant, he became lazy, and he got a sense of entitlement. Everyone knew something was up with him, there was rumors from day one but no one could prove anything of course. He just came back 'different'."
We do not know why Sabu turned but, says SS, "Everyone has a breaking point I guess, he was facing a long time in prison. Reading Fox [News] (If Fox actually counts as a credible source) it sounds like he folded easily."
However, while some are proclaiming the end of Anonymous, suggesting that just because a mouthpiece has been taken out the group will be shaken, SS disputed this, reminding us that Anonymous is a hydra with many heads, and a cause.
"Anonymous is an idea, and it will not go away. This may send some of the kids away, but it will not deter people who are dedicated to a cause," he said.
"I did know Sabu, and have talked with him numerous times as well as those around him. He has to look at himself in the mirror everyday now, and his kids will probably find out how he sold out what he believed in. This is a loss for just about everyone I'd say." µ