TheDarkOverlord, an online hacking and activity group, has come out to demand Bitcoins in ransom in exchange for its silence over information it allegedly uncovered regarding the 9/11 terrorist attacks, according to a report on Motherboard. The group claimed in a tweet on New Year’s Eve that it possesses damaging information about selected individuals and corporations in connection to Al-Qaeda’s terrorist attack on the Twin Towers.
The hackers, in a post on text-sharing site Pastebin, claimed to have stolen thousands of sensitive documents concerning the terrorist attack, and would be “providing answers” to the conspiracy theories that have come up in relation to the event by releasing these documents.
Companies Already Named
The hackers claimed to have gotten access to various insurance companies and legal firms, specifically citing Hiscox Syndicates Ltd., Silverstein Properties and Lloyds of London.
TheDarkOverLord twitter account ( since deleted )
In part, the announcement made by the group read:
“Hiscox Syndicates Ltd and Lloyds of London are some of the biggest insurers on the planet insuring everything from the smallest policies to some of the largest policies on the planet, and who even insured structures such as the World Trade Centers.”
A spokesperson for the Hiscox Group confirmed that the hack did occur, stating that the hackers were able to get the information from a law firm that acts as an advisor to the Group. While speaking with Motherboard, the spokesman made the clairification:
“The law firm’s systems are not connected to Hiscox’s IT infrastructure, and Hiscox’s own systems were unaffected by this incident. One of the cases the law firm handled for Hiscox and other insurers related to litigation arising from the events of 9/11, and we believe that information relating to this was stolen during that breach.”
In an attempt to demonstrate their intent, the hackers released a few documents, letters, and email correspondences, with various legal firms, where names such as the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the Transport Security Administration (TSA), were mentioned. Although the released documents were reported to be “fairly innocuous,” their release, as well as the corroboration by Hiscox’s spokesperson, gives some credibility to the hackers’ claims and forces one to question just what kind of information the hacking crew has in their possession.
The Ransom Request
Via an extortion note, the hackers released a link to an archived file that contains the totality of stolen documents. While the file remains encrypted, the hackers have made it clear that they will release decryption keys unless their ransom requests are met. The group goes on to say, “Pay the f**k up, or we are going to bury you with this. If you continue to fail us, we’ll escalate these releases by releasing the keys, each time a Layer is opened, a new wave of liability will fall upon you.”
The Hacker’s Pedigree
TheDarkOverlord’s popularity peaked when the group released episodes of Netflix’s hit series Orange is the New Black back in 2017. According to the report, the hackers breached the security at Larson Studios, a popular post-production company that has released various hit TV series. The group claimed to have stolen content from networks such as the IFC, ABC, FOX, Netflix and National Geographic.
Just as it is with the current case, TheDarkOverlord initially asked for a ransom from Netflix for the stolen OITNB episodes to be kept unreleased. However, when the streaming service refused to acquiesce to their demands, the group released the entire fifth season of the series through a link shared on Twitter.