Game Hackers Launch DDOS, Target @PhantomL0rd for SWATting
UPDATE: In Video, Gamer Describes Police Raid With Automatic Weapons
Posted on | December 31, 2013 | 15 Comments
A group of hackers going by the name DERP has launched DDoS attacks on a number of big games and websites today, bringing a number of them down, including the homepage of Electronic Arts.
The attacks have been focused on a single gamer — Phantoml0rd — and have been systematically trying to crash all of the games he regularly streams on his Twitch page, including World of Warcraft and League of Legends. . . .
The group — or maybe it’s just one guy, we’re looking into it — then moved onto other targets like Club Penguin and Electronic Arts . . .
PhantomL0rd has posted a message on his Facebook page saying that police arrived at his home — called to investigate a “hostage situation” — earlier this evening.
just had an automatic pointed at me, put in hand cuffs and sat in the back of a cop car as I watched as 6 policemen go through my whole house.. will keep you all updated.
It appears those going after the streamer’s games have moved on from trying to bring down websites to “Swatting” his home.
The idea that “SWATting” is a harmless prank to play — an idea that originates with the same kind of vandal mentality which considers taking down Web sites with DDOS attacks a pleasant amusement — will not be endorsed by @PhantomL0rd, nor by anyone else who has ever been the target of such crimes.
(Hat-tip: David West on Twitter.)
UPDATE: Just listened to @PhantomL0rd’s hopelessly rambling YouTube video explanation — where do I apply to get a refund for that hour of my life? — and transcribed this:
“Three cop cars and about seven policemen. . . . The first thing I see is this guy leaning on a tree with a fully-automatic [weapon] . . . I wasn’t scared. I knew what was going on. . . . He just yelled at me: ‘Turn around and walk backward.’ . . . Hands up behind my head. . . . Immediately, he puts the handcuffs on me. . . . Now there’s like 13, 14 cops. . . . The police chief was there. . . . These f–king handcuffs hurt. . . 25, 30 minutes in there [locked in back of a police car] . . . They sent about six cops into my house. . . . Later found out that the [fake] threat was a hostage situation, that I was [reportedly] holding five people hostage.”
Really, if someone else wants to take the time to do a complete transcript of that video, good luck. His description of the SWATting starts about the 20-minute mark, after @PhantomL0rd has described his entire day from the time he woke up in the morning.
I understand how, in the jangled emotion of the moment, people lose focus, but the larger problem with first-person accounts of this sort is the lack of objective judgment: What do people need to know? What is the most important part of this story?
Think about the viewer (or reader) and tell your story in a way that engages and makes sense. The viewer or reader doesn’t give a damn about you, as a person or as a videogamer or whatever. You are not the story; the crime against you is the story, and you need to try to tell that story in a just-the-facts-ma’am manner. Anyway . . .
It appears that envy was the motive for the harassment of @PhantomL0rd: He is both popular and successful as a gamer, and was “streaming” some of his game action for a rather large viewership when the hacker or hackers began sequentially targeting online game servers for DDOS attacks. That is to say, they targeted the games that @PhantomL0rd was playing, just to mess up his streaming, and then added a SWATting for good measure. Also, @PhantomL0rd was targeted for about a half-dozen hoax pizza deliveries.
The fact that these crimes were inspired by petty jealousies among videogamers is irrelevant. The people responsible for this kind of harassment need to go to prison.