A new Ubuntu Linux distribution is being marketed as “Anonymous-OS” and comes pre-loaded with tools for hacking and protecting anonymity online. However, it is unclear whether the new operating system was created by the anarchic hacking group, or even has its endorsement.
Anonymous-OS Version 0.1 was released on Tuesday and is being offered from Sourceforge and as a bitTorrent download, according to a post on a Tumblr.com page for Anonymous-OS. The operating system is an Ubuntu-based Linux distribution that was created under Ubuntu version 11.10. It uses the Mate Desktop Environment. The operating system was created for “educational purposes” to “(check) the security of Web pages,” according to the Anonymous-OS Tumblr page.
The new distribution comes loaded with tools useful to hackers, security researchers and those interested in perserving their anonymity online. Among the applications bundled with Anonymous-OS are the anonymizing Tor client, Wireshark, a network protocol analyzer, password cracker John the Ripper and Pyloris, a tool for launching denial of service attacks.
The operating system isn’t ready to be installed on devices. Its creators recommend booting it from an external device such as a CD or USB drive, according to the Anonymous-OS Tumblr page.
Though the new Linux distribution clearly makes use of Anonymous’s iconography, including the ubiquitous Guy Fawkes mask, it is unclear whether any link exists between the group and those behind the new operating system. Twitter accounts associated with the group that have been used to promote other Anonymous operations were silent on the new operating system, suggesting that it was “inspired” by Anonymous more than it was made by the group.