It was recently brought to our attention that attrition.org has been mentioned in a fictional novel. While original details were vague, we finally found out that an author by the name of Andy McNab (with the assistance of one Robert Rigby), penned a fictional book titled "Payback", copyrighted in 2005 and published in the United Kingdom. In fair use, the following is quoted:
Payback, Andy McNab and Robert Rigby, c. 2005, p. 180:
"She began hitting the websites she had used before to gain access to the Intelligence Service's internal computer system and George Fincham's personal e-mails. That time she had been helped by a hacker using the name Black Star, who was surfing the dark corners of the Deep Web.
Elena was good at hacking, but compared to the experts who dwelt down in the Deep Web she was still a novice, a script kiddie. She hit attrition.org, the site where hackers receive credits for their exploits, and where Black Star had first popped up on her screen.
Just like last time, Elena knew she would need a script written by an experienced hacker to get her past the firewalls protecting the Northwood mainframe. Just like real fire doors, firewalls are sometimes left open; if she could get through them, Northwood would be hers and she could go wherever she wanted."
While we're amused and even a tad flattered at being mentioned in a novel, it seems to us that the authors acted irresponsibly by including attrition.org in their work. The authors apparently did little background research into the site as a whole, but also tied attrition.org to a character called "Black Star", who obviously does not exist. While we did operate a defacement mirror, it was not designed to credit defacers and their activity, rather a place to monitor such activity and create a record of it.
If Andy McNab or Robert Rigby would like to contact us directly regarding the use of attrition.org in their novels, they are certainly welcome to do so. The least they could do is send us a couple of autographed copies.
We were originally alerted to this by Stuart Maitland, who contacted us and typed up the relevant paragraphs without hassle. Due to an overdose of superglue fumes, Jericho filed it away and promptly forgot that not everyone who mails is a class A winner.
Update: Fri Apr 14 16:49:45 EST 2006 - We have received our autographed copies from Random House UK.