back to article LulzSec disavows alleged Census hack

While the UK government might still be checking systems, it seems that LulzSec themselves have denied hacking the UK census. A recent Twat from LulzSec's Twitter feed said: "Not sure we claimed to hack the UK census or where that rumour started, but we assume it's because people are stupider than you and I." This is followed …


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  1. Arnie

    And this is what happens.......

    When you outsource data from everyone in the country to fucking lockheed martin. FTW

  2. liquidphantom


    "A recent Twat from LulzSec's Twitter feed"

    Was that intentional?

  3. adnim

    It would seem

    the guy just ran the IRCd

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. tallywhacker

        Your law skills are teh AWESOME!

        You must be some kinda lawyer so something! If he's running the IRC server for a criminal conspiracy then the police have got every right to seize said server, and every right to be reading the data from it.

        In what way is it illegal?

    2. Gulfie


      If he ran the IRC he could possibly be charged with some kind of facilitating offence. If the hacks were classed as cyber--TERRORISM then he's up to his neck in a facilitation charge and possibly a not reporting charge...

      How stupid... (but then he WAS from Essex)

      1. Remy Redert

        re: Facilitating

        Safe harbour provisions.

        He as a service provider cannot be held accountable for the actions of his users. If they do, they could just as well hold Microsoft accountable for any crimes coordinated over MSN or Hotmail.

        If running the IRC server was all he did, the arrest is unwarranted and he should sue their pants off. Also, if he was running it competently, there are no logs to find, because IRC servers do not normally log conversations or connections.

        1. Naughtyhorse

          Safe harbour provisions....That would be true

          As in, for example the, bankers handling al queda money...

          oh hang on a second......

          brit subject, accused my merkin secutity of a terrorist offence...

          he's fucked

          lulz gonna need a new chatroom

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            some people

            Don't seem to know how IRC generally works, you run the server and other people come along and make channels, unless you're a control freak you tend not to pay much attention to what goes on in the rooms, much the same as IM providers tend not to monitor all the chats going on on their networks.

            Also lulz apparently use a fair few irc servers why pick this one? Probably because it's hosted in the UK and not the states.

        2. david wilson


          >>"Safe harbour provisions."

          If he was providing general services of which any questionably-legal stuff is just a small part, and he was in ignorance of what was happening, he might have some case.

          Does anyone know if that's the situation in this case, or are people jumping to judgements in ignorance of the facts?

          On the other hand, if he knew what was going on and condoned it or ignored it, I can't see provisions designed to insulate entities from a need to proactively police their systems being of much use as a defence.

          >>"If they do, they could just as well hold Microsoft accountable for any crimes coordinated over MSN or Hotmail."

          I guess if they continued providing services to someone after becoming aware that that person was doing something illegal, then they would have some responsibility for that person's continued use of their systems.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    spoke too soon

    The tweets have now been removed even when using the tweet ID. weird!

  5. Maxson

    Not sure if it's believable or not

    Not sure what to believe on this, as LulzSec recently came out and mentioned all sorts of things they have hacked but not brought up before, so hearing them say "We haven't advertised doing this hack" is less than confidence inducing. Still, I'm sure a group of guys just "doing it for the Lulz" is always completely honest...

  6. M Gale

    "A recent Twat from LulzSec's Twitter feed"

    Typo or humour?

  7. Pendragon

    no need to insult them :)

    A recent Twat from LulzSec's Twitter feed said:

    Seems a bit harsh calling them a Twat.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh dear.

    Brown trousers, boys?

  9. Demosthenese

    Oh dear.

    "... because people are stupider than you and I."

    ITYM "more stupid than you or me."

    and I'm not sure about you.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      it depends on if the "you and I" are the subject or the object.

      It's a pretty esoteric piece of English to get worried about though as everyone understands the meaning.

      1. Tom 13

        While I realize that a complete fork

        to separate Merkin from Channel is a fond desire of many, it isn't esoteric on either side of the pond. And it is important to get correct.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          I don't think it is important, and I'm willing to wager most people on both sides of the pond would only have a 50% chance of getting it correct. It isn't like the misuse of , or ' which can seriously change the meaning of a sentence. Incorrect use of I and Me doesn't slow down the reading at all, it's really only a topic of interest to technical authors and editors.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Conjuctionist v Prepositionist

      Personally, I'm a Conjunctionist. But maybe Prepositionists are better educated than me am educated.

      (I know the site is in Merkinese, but I think it still applies to the official fork).

      Oh yes, on topic, who knows whether it was them. The media would be so much more accurate if people would just own up to what they've done.

  10. Richard Tobin

    Grammar flame

    That should be "stupider than you and ME". Don't these hackers know anything?

    1. KitD


      Would you say "you and me are stupider than people" ?

  11. Electric Panda

    Personally speaking

    I think they do have the data (remember Lockheed Martin, a US company, were given the contract for some reason) and one of their Lulzy Muppets made the announcement prematurely. For general blind panic as well as "lulz" they pulled the tweet and started this posturing when the media picked up the story in an attempt to save face, as stealing an entire country's census data goes far beyond stealing passwords from Sony I think you'll find.

    Remember it was announced on the Twitter feed, was there for a while and suddenly disappeared when the news broke. I also think it should be made illegal for electoral and census data to be handled by foreign companies but that's just cynical me, what do I know?

    1. M Gale

      Given that the 2001 UK census data is over 30 terabytes...

      ...methinks they'd probably still be downloading it now.

      Now that'd be one hell of a torrent.

      1. Anonymous Coward


        Even still, I bet they can analyse and publish the results quicker than either the government or Lockheed Martin

    2. Tom 13

      Foreign companies?

      Hell, I don't even really want the government handling it.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @stealing an entire country's census data

      I would call anyone who did that "the messenger", and ask that you not shoot them.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Most likely... attempt at bargaining over the arrest. Alright not bargaining - threatening.

    The police make an arrest and then somebody makes a huge threat against the government. That doesn't have to mean the arrested man is a member of lulzsec or indeed guilty of anything at all. It doesn't have to mean the poster is a member of the group either. But it does seem a startling coincidence.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    cant wait to see how these nerds handle a lengthy prison sentence. not so many Lulz now eh?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      Erm... innocent until proven guilty?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I realise Lulzsec are flavour of the month...

    but shouldn't this just have been an update to the original story?

  15. b166er

    Calm down Arnie

    As every fule kno, there is no tweeted, only twat

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Everyone is discussing about whether LulzSec did this yet nobody seems to care that the source of accusation is ... PasteBin!

    "A PasteBin note earlier today appeared to suggest the collective had grabbed UK census data."

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hang on a sec

    Does any one see the irony in what they are trying to do?

    Do they not realise that the more they take the piss the more likely politicans will use it as a vote winner and we'll all get shafted?

    If this guy was involved in an way they should nail him to the wall for it, perhaps make an example for other kids / young adults thinking of helping them, sooner or later others will get caught.

    Of course the other thing is they are just plain stupid, using Sony as an example, apparently they lost a lot of money, money that would have otherwise been taxed by govenments, not to mention the extra costed needed to find them stop them, by pissing about they are cutting the income that supports them and/or us!!

    I wouldnt go as far as calling them terroists as others have but i would place them in the same group as those that get involved in Riots, achieves nothing and costs us all money, selfish gits!

    1. Naughtyhorse

      those that get involved in Riots

      like suffragettes

      civil rights activists


      the arab spring ffs

      selfish? who??


      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        I never mentioned protestors, i was talking about RIOTS! There’s a big difference,

        You have the freedom of expression but you have no right what so ever to trash things

        Of course if you’re in to all that, then that explains your answer and the kind of person that you are, but remember that you pay for trashing the place in the form of taxes, unless you’re a leach on society as well, which is equally likely given your comment

      2. david wilson


        >>"like suffragettes"

        Well, it's certainly debatable whether a couple of years of window-smashing actually advanced the cause much.

        It's arguable that a much greater contribution to UK female suffrage was achieved by the great and unmissable female participation in the effort for WWI and the associated *lack* of demonstration by many previous demonstrators than by the earlier relatively brief period of troublemaking, which itself only started after things had got to a point where it seemed that women getting the right to vote was already a question of when rather than if, as part of the gradual process of expansion of the franchise which had been creeping along for decades.

        As ever, people will often feel the need to make past sacrifices seem worthwhile whether or not they truly made much difference, but in reality, it isn't always the people who make the most noise who actually do the most to change things, even if the people who make the most noise might also be likely to make the most noise putting that case that they deserve the credit for what happened.

        It might seem ungrateful even to question whether some individual's undoubted sacrifice actually helped, but not questioning means giving up on history and just putting faith in mythology.

        I'm sure that in Northern Ireland there have been people at any number of points of time trying to justify the actions of various people on their side in the past as having resulted in the current situation being better for their side than it otherwise would, but it seems that not of all of those people could possibly be right, and maybe most or all of them are actually wrong.

        It's far easier, and more comforting to many people, to have a simple and heroic view of history than see it as something more complicated and tangled, with particular events often having numerous causes, some drawn out over very long periods of time.

        As far as I can see, the corrective for a Great Man view of history isn't just to chuck in a few women, if honesty is actually a goal.

  18. alun phillips
    Big Brother

    Census data

    Who cares? it's all made publicly available eventually anyway isn't it

    1. nsld


      If thats what you think then post all your info from the census on an open web page and watch the identity thieves go to work.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        "watch the identity thieves go to work"

        They steal identities so they don't have to work.

  19. Anonymous Coward

    It never happened - I told you so...

    ...yesterday, twice, in the comments... anonymously - because I don't trust the readership of El Reg with my data...

  20. Winkypop Silver badge

    Step up to Red Alert!

    Sir, are you absolutely sure? It does mean changing the bulb!

  21. Mark York 3 Silver badge

    Can I Get This Straight In My Mind

    A bunch of anonymous people are in their own words are "Not sure we claimed to hack the UK census or where that rumour started".

    Left hand meet right!

  22. Ten98

    Hardly Surprising

    This story will now disappear from the front pages of BBC news, Sky News et al, and the real story: "Actually Lulzsec deny any involvement in this, and the guy they arrested was just running one of the IRC networks they use and had nothing to do with the Census Hack, which never actually happened" will disappear off to page 100.

    They won't issue an apology for reporting a PASTEBIN COMMENT as NEWS (?!?!?) and everyone will go on beleiving that "These Lulzsec guys are out to get me and my Census data!111!!!".

    Question: Does the public believing this fabricated story that Lulzsec are out to get them and are scary boogeymen and can simply be arrested at any time DAMAGE or HELP the military industrial complex and their grip on control?

  23. Anonymous Coward

    @grammar flamer

    Richard Tobin: Posted Tuesday 21st June 2011 15:25 GMT

    That should be "stupider than you and ME". Don't these hackers know anything? possibreee,

    If in doubt, treat each aspect seperately before conjoining them. 'Stupider than you' are... well, _more_ stupid than you are; Stupider than me is? _or_ Stupider than I am? ...I believe normally it would be: "More stupid than you are, or that I am".

    therefore, not 'stupider than you'.

  24. Alex King


    Hang on, surely the most concerning thing about the "people are stupider than you and I" remark is that the tweeter (twater, whatever) doesn't consider themself to be a person?

    Maybe a section or the interwebs has become semi-sentient and naturally manifested itself as a h4x0r in the form of the kitten that is pleasantly surprised that it can haz cheezburger?


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