(CNN) — LulzSec, the gleeful and secretive band of hackers who appear to be responsible for a string of high-profile and sometimes embarrassing Internet attacks, said it was disbanding.
“For the past 50 days we’ve been disrupting and exposing corporations, governments, often the general population itself, and quite possibly everything in between, just because we could,” the group said Saturday in a statement posted on multiple websites. It did not cite a reason.
If true, the collective’s final act was the posting of what it said were internal company documents from AT&T along with private data from other companies.
LulzSec claimed recently to have attacked the CIA website, and took credit for hacking into the website of American public broadcaster PBS and posting a fake story saying the rapper Tupac Shakur was still alive. He was killed nearly 15 years ago.
It is unclear whether LulzSec members played a role in the Sony PlayStation Network breach, where hackers broke into Sony Pictures’ website, compromising the accounts of over 1 million users, and the gaming company Sega, stealing the details of nearly 1.3 million users.
But it posted what it claims is proprietary information from Sony Pictures and other Sony properties’ websites.
It also claimed responsibility for bringing down the Brazilian government’s website earlier this month.
When British police announced the arrest of a teenager suspected of hacking into systems and mounting denial of service attacks against a number of international businesses, LulzSec downplayed down his role in the collective.
In one post, the collective seemed to suggest that by making its attacks public, it’ll push websites to increase security. But it also said releasing people’s information is sometimes worth doing because it’s fun.
Analysts said the group appears to be some sort of spin-off of “Anonymous,” the loose coalition of hackers that grew to prominence through their support of the whistleblower site WikiLeaks.
But while Anonymous has its own set of moral codes and is largely politically motivated, LulzSec seems to be random.
For every hack like the one on PBS, which the group said came out of anger over a documentary about WikiLeaks, there’s the cracking of a porn site — and a subsequent public list of members’ e-mail addresses and passwords.