A hacker responsible for the Hacking Team leaks stole approximately US$11,000 in Bitcoin and donated it to an ecological initiative in Syria known as the Rojava Plan.
The hacker, who claimed responsibility last June for a data heist against the Italian spyware firm Hacking Team, announced his donation on Twitter in early May.
Rojava is one of the most inspiring revolutionary projects in the world today. I just donated 10000€ in bitcoin https://t.co/2ubZctplSy
— Hack Back! (@GammaGroupPR) May 5, 2016
Known for his aliases “Phineas Phisher,” “Hack Back!,” and “@GammaGroupPR,” he declined to name the victims from whom he stole, stating he’d “rather not yet, since there’s hopefully a few orders of magnitude more on the way.”
Instead he spoke to Ars Technica about why he decided to support Rojava, an autonomous region in northern Syria:
“They’re in an incredibly difficult situation, with ISIS on one side and US ally Turkey embargoing and attacking them on the other. Yet, in a part of the world the West likes to look down on as a backwards shithole, they’re building a society that takes ‘Western’ values like democracy and feminism to lengths that put the West to shame. All while fighting ISIS and winning, unlike the US trained and supplied Iraqi army.”
Rojava struggles to feed itself amidst the ongoing regional conflict against ISIL/Daesh.
To address that challenge, it has set up a crowdfunding page and stated it will use any and all donations to purchase farm equipment as well as create its own organic fertilizer from waste collected from the towns, villages, and farms.
The hacker hopes his donation will help draw media attention and additional donations to Rojava. On Reddit, he even urged users to expropriate money from banks, either by carding or hacking, and to then donate the funds to the “Rojava Plan.”
Not everyone agrees with his tactics, however. One reader wrote the following:
“It takes about a month for a credit card company to reimburse victims of credit card fraud, and about 1-2 weeks before a new card will come in the mail. In your deluded mind that might be a minor inconvenience but in reality that’s enough to really mess with the average person’s life. People like you are the absolute worst.”
Phisher’s donation was timestamped May 5th, 2016, meaning that his donation has been publicly recorded in the Bitcoin ledger.