NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Lulz Security group of rogue hackers announced it was disbanding on Saturday with one last data dump, which included internal AOL Inc and AT&T documents.
LulzSec, which gained wide recognition for breaching the websites of Sony Corp, the CIA and a British police unit among other targets, said in a statement that it had accomplished its mission to disrupt corporate and government bodies for entertainment.
“Our planned 50 day cruise has expired, and we must now sail into the distance, leaving behind — we hope — inspiration, fear, denial, happiness, approval, disapproval, mockery, embarrassment, thoughtfulness, jealousy, hate, even love,” the group said.
Known for irreverence and a fondness for naval metaphors, the hacker group took to Twitter — the microblogging site where it had more than 277,000 followers — to release its statement.
A link to the release also was posted on //www.lulzsecurity.com but there was no way to independently contact the group to confirm the release.
The abrupt dissolution came a few days after LulzSec threatened to escalate its cyberattacks and steal classified information from governments, banks and other major establishments.
LulzSec also had said it was teaming up with the Anonymous hacker activist group to cause more serious trouble.
“… Our planned 50-day cruise has expired,” the hackers said in their statement, “and we must now sail into the distance, leaving behind — we hope — inspiration, fear, denial, happiness, approval, disapproval, mockery, embarrassment, thoughtfulness, jealousy, hate, even love. If anything, we hope we had a microscopic impact on someone, somewhere. Anywhere.”
In what could be a sign that cyber police were making progress toward shutting down LulzSec, British police said on Tuesday they had arrested a 19-year-old man on suspicion that he was connected to the attacks on Sony, the CIA and a British police unit that fights organized crime.
London police declined to say if the teenager was a member of LulzSec but the hacking group said on Twitter that he had hosted one of its chatrooms on his computer server.
The arrest came after Spanish police earlier this month apprehended three men on suspicion they helped Anonymous.