Top 5 most notorious hacking groups in history

A number of hacking groups have gained notoriety in the last couple of decades thanks to their penchant for getting past security firewalls of large companies as well as government agencies.

We take a look at the 5 most notorious hacking groups in history and how they have, over the years, turned cyber-warfare into what it is today.

Chaos Computer Club

Nationality: German
Founded: 1980
Best known for: Formed as an ethical hacking club as far back as in 1980, Chaos Computer Club revealed weaknesses and flaws in cyber-security protocols used by both Government agencies and private enterprises. The group gained prominence following a 'well-intentioned' cyber-attack on a bank in Hamburg through which it stole 134,000 Marks, before returning the money to the bank.

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Anonymous

Nationality: Global presence
Founded: 2004
Best known for: Led by a number of 'under-cover' hackers from around the world, Anonymous has had a controversial journey so far. The group claims that it fights against government surveillance and censorship as well as against organisations that spread hatred and racism. It has been known for launching cyber-attacks on U.S. government agencies, military personnel, media and police officers. However, the group garnered global admiration after it flooded ISIS-run Twitter accounts with gay porn and rainbow flags following a terrorist attack in the United States.

Hidden Cobra

Nationality: North Korean
Founded: 2009
Best known for: The United States has alleged that the North Korean hacker group is behind a large number of cyber-attacks on media, finance and aerospace companies as well as on governments across the world in the last eight years. Also known as the Lazarus Group among cyber-security firms, it is best known for conducting the global WannaCry attack which spread malicious ransomware to hundreds of thousands of computers around the world.

Pawn Storm

Also known as: Fancy Bear, ATP28, Sofacy Group, Sednit and STRONTIUM
Nationality: Russian
Founded: ~2005
Best known for: Pawn Storm gained prominence following a series of alleged state-sponsored cyber-attacks on Emmanuel Macron's campaign websites prior to the French Presidential elections. The group is well-known for conducting cyber-attacks and smear campaigns on armed forces, the defense industry, news media, and politicians to influence public opinion and in turn, election results.

Lizard Squad

Nationality: Global presence
Founded: 2014
Best known for: Lizard Squad is known for being a master of distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, which it routinely employs to wreak servers of large enterprises and government agencies. While it gained initial popularity following a DDoS attack on the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live in 2014, it later gained further prominence after it conducted a DDoS attack on the Malaysian Airlines website.

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