Cloud storage provider Dropbox went offline for several hours on Friday. Those claiming to be members of the loose knit hacking collective Anonymous were quick to claim responsibility for the downtime but Dropbox officials have since confirmed that a routine maintenance task gone wrong, not a hacking attempt, was to blame.
Service was restored a few hours later but the proverbial damage was already done. A group known as AnonOpsKorea, a Korean branch of Anonymous, claimed one of their affiliates hacked the service to avenge the death of Aaron Swartz. If you recall, Swartz committed suicide last year as he was facing federal charges for hacking into MIT’s network.
The hacker, going by the Twitter handle 1775Sec, claimed to have compromised the service and threatened to publically share stolen data if Dropbox didn’t fix the vulnerability used to gain entry. Shortly after, the hacker posted a link to data that was allegedly stolen from Dropbox although the company pointed out that the information in the dump was posted a month prior and wasn’t from them.
In a statement issued to the New York Times, a spokesperson for Dropbox said the outage was indeed caused by internal maintenance and not an external factor. In regard to claims of leaked user information, the spokesperson said it was little more than a hoax. The company echoed these same sentiments on their official Twitter page that same day.