Welcome to Anonymous-OS

Good morning, and welcome to a brand new day in the world of OSs: Anonymous-OS, brought to you by … uh … somebody.

“Anonymous”, you see, is far too easy a mask for literally anybody, anywhere to assume. This a a sword with at least two edges, because it’s simultaneously necessary and deadly.

It’s apparent that there do in fact seem to be good reasons for protest by those not so blessed by a 14,000 point Dow. The rich and in some cases the conniving are doing just dandy. The huddled masses, not so much. Everyone sub-millionaire is feeling cautious at the very least, and just the caution in itself suppresses the economy. But even more, people start looking for someone to blame, giving rise to the Tea Party, Occupy, Anonymous and so forth.

The solution doesn’t lie in suppressing these groups, or blaming them, though ignorance can be grievous to watch (and I spread that critique to all sides). The only solution is correcting the conditions that cause the grievances in the first place. This can be quite uncomfortable, since those who have gained ownership of everything are reluctant to give it up, and those who now have nothing to lose become extremely dangerous. And in the mean time, there’s collateral damage.

Witness the release of Anonymous-OS. Hooray! What a cool idea! Check out the LifeHacker article “Anonymous Releases Their Own Operating System, Complete with Hacking Tools Galore” at
http://lifehacker.com/5893421/anonymous-releases-their-own-operating-system-complete-with-hacking-tools-galore. (The download page is http://anonymous-os.tumblr.com/download.)

Oh wait! Isn’t it weird for Anonymous to release an OS? As the writer of the above, Whitson Gordon, calls it, “a very strange move”? An operating system based on … political activism?

And uh-oh! Anonymous itself has been pwned, and recently
(http://gizmodo.com/5890130/anonymous-members-hacked-during-their-own-ddos-attacks) when their own attack tool was swapped with a trojanized version. There are some spectacular trust-analysis issues right here, because knowing whom you’re dealing with is the principal step in security, which is to say, trust.

As if in confirmation of my fears this appears: “Anonymous OS is fake, ‘wrapped in trojans’ says AnonOps Twitter account” at
http://www.theverge.com/2012/3/15/2873669/anonymous-os-fake-trojan-anonops. Hmm. Whom to believe, whom to believe…. If two men say they’re Jesus, one of them must be wrong! If two people say they’re Anonymous, and directly contradict each other, exactly which one is the true spokesperson?

Okay, I’ll stop being coy and admit I’m downloading it as I type. But I’ll take it into a tightly protected, secure and air-gapped environment to fire it up. I wouldn’t recommend you touch it unless you can provide a similar environment. In other words, it’s not for the hobbyist. Researchers, however, are going to be highly interested in the traffic that emanates from this OS.

Because none of us trust it a bit.