Barrett Brown turns to Reddit for AntiSec support

The Texas writer and self-proclaimed Anonymous spokesman posted to Reddit for help reading 3.3 million emails that are about to be made public.  


Fruzsina Eördögh


Posted on Dec 28, 2011   Updated on Jun 2, 2021, 11:21 pm CDT

Barrett Brown is currently “recruiting” for AntiSec on Reddit.

Profiled recently by the Daily Dot, Brown is a Texas writer and self-appointed Anonymous spokesperson who claimed to be battling against the violent drug cartels in Mexico. But it appears he now has a new target.

In a Reddit thread linking to his own take on the hack against security think tank Stratfor carried out by AntiSec, Brown asks redditors to help sift through the 3.3 million emails that are about to be released to the public.

“The e-mails obtained before Christmas Day will vastly improve our ability to … bring to light other instances of corruption, crime, and deception on the part of certain powerful actors based in the U.S. and elsewhere,” wrote Brown on Pastebin, a link to which was included in the Reddit post.

Redditors, for the most part, are eager to join the effort.

“Bored and more than willing!” wrote seasang71.

“I would be happy to help” commented neotropic9, before asking “Is there some way of organizing our efforts or are we just going to randomly shuffle through them as a group?”

Realist OddAdviceGiver considered the logistics of crowd-sourcing the project: “I have one hell of an index server and one hell of a SQL server, but it won’t be able to take heavy loads…I think it’ll take about a day to index too. And that includes segregating header data into different fields for each header entry. But I’m scared y’all will down my shit.”

In the Pastebin document Brown linked in the Reddit thread, Brown uses the word “we” and “us” repeatedly, giving media outlets the impression that Brown is part of AntiSec. In fact, a recent Forbes post stated that Brown “appears to be taking the lead in this attack against Stratfor.”

But according to an AntiSec member the Daily Dot corresponds with, that’s not the case.

“I think everyone in AntiSec would oppose BB joining #antisec,” wrote the source, repeatedly stressing the point.

However, the AntiSec member did admit that another AntiSec member began speaking with Brown recently.

“[H]e’s basically parroting us,” wrote the AntiSec member, adding Brown wants to be “relevant.”

It’s certainly in Brown’s best interest to remain relevant. He reportedly signed a six-figure book deal on Anonymous through Amazon. And if he’s able to successfully leverage redditors for support, the AntiSec contact acknowledged that would be “useful to us.”

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*First Published: Dec 28, 2011, 7:25 pm CST