When hackers broke into Ryan Russell’s server and plastered his private e-mails and other personal files on the Internet last week, Russell tried to shrug it off as a harmless prank.

But Russell, editor of Hack Proofing Your Network and an analyst with SecurityFocus.com, also seemed shaken by the incident.

“There’s a group out there whose goal in life is to show they’re smarter than you and they have the tools to do it,” said Russell, a “white-hat” hacker who goes by the nickname “BlueBoar.”
The break-in at Russell’s Thieveco.com site, which is hosted by a Canadian ISP, appears to be the latest in a series of attacks against white hats and prominent figures in the information security profession.

Claiming responsibility for the attacks is a shadowy group named el8. Earlier this year, members launched Project Mayhem, a campaign designed to “cause worldwide physical destruction to the security industry infrastructure,” according to an article published last month in el8’s online magazine.

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