Official TOR Project statement on Freedom Hosting arrests and the missing TOR nodes.

UPDATE: The Pirate Bay and all of it's mirror sites have also gone down!
Researchers say Tor-targeted malware phoned home to NSA:
Around midnight on August 4th we were notified by a few people that a large number of hidden service addresses have disappeared from the Tor Network. There are a variety of rumors about a hosting company for hidden services: that it is suddenly offline, has been breached, or attackers have placed a javascript exploit on their web site.

A Hidden service is a server – often delivering web pages – that is reachable only through the Tor network. While most people know that the Tor network with its thousands of volunteer-run nodes provides anonymity for users who don´t want to be tracked and identified on the internet, the lesser-known hidden service feature of Tor provides anonymity also for the server operator.

Anyone can run hidden services, and many do. We use them internally at The Tor Project to offer our developers anonymous access to services such as SSH, IRC, HTTP, and our bug tracker. Other organizations run hidden services to protect dissidents, activists, and protect the anonymity of users trying to find help for suicide prevention, domestic violence, and abuse-recovery. Whistleblowers and journalists use hidden services to exchange information in a secure and anonymous way and publish critical information in a way that is not easily traced back to them. The New Yorker's Strongbox is one public example.
Hidden service addresses, aka the dot onion domain, are cryptographically and automatically generated by the tor software. They look like this http://idnxcnkne4qt76tg.onion/, which is our website as a hidden service.

There is no central repository nor registry of addresses. The dot onion address is both the name and routing address for the services hosted at the dot onion. The Tor network uses the .onion-address to direct requests to the hidden server and route back the data from the hidden server to the anonymous user. The design of the Tor network ensures that the user can not know where the server is located and the server can not find out the IP-address of the user, except by intentional malicious means like hidden tracking code embedded in the web pages delivered by the server. Additionally, the design of the Tor network, which is run by thousands of volunteers, ensures that it is impossible to censor or block certain .onion-addresses.

The person, or persons, who run Freedom Hosting are in no way affiliated or connected to The Tor Project, Inc., the organization coordinating the development of the Tor software and research. In the past, adversarial organizations have skipped trying to break Tor hidden services and instead attacked the software running at the server behind the dot onion address.

Exploits for PHP, Apache, MySQL, and other software are far more common than exploits for Tor. The current news indicates that someone has exploited the software behind Freedom Hosting. From what is known so far, the breach was used to configure the server in a way that it injects some sort of javascript exploit in the web pages delivered to users. This exploit is used to load a malware payload to infect user's computers. The malware payload could be trying to exploit potential bugs in Firefox 17 ESR, on which our Tor Browser is based. We're investigating these bugs and will fix
them if we can.

As for now, one of multiple hidden service hosting companies appears to be down. There are lots of rumors and speculation as to what's happened. We're reading the same news and threads you are and don't have any insider information. We'll keep you updated as details become available.

The founder of Freedom Hosting has been arrested in Ireland and is awaiting extradition to USA.

In a crackdown that FBI claims to be about hunting down pedophiles, half of the onion sites in the TOR network has been compromised, including the e-mail counterpart of TOR deep web, TORmail.

This is undoubtedly a big blow to the TOR community, Crypto Anarchists, and more generally, to Internet anonymity. All of this happening during DEFCON.

If you happen to use and account name and or password combinations that you have re used in the TOR deep web, change them NOW.

Eric Eoin Marques who was arrested runs a company called Host Ultra Limited.

He has an account at WebHosting Talk forums.

A few days ago there were mass outages of Tor hidden services that predominantly effected Freedom Hosting websites.

"Down for Maintenance
Sorry, This server is currently offline for maintenance. Please try again in a few hours."

If you saw this while browsing Tor you went to an onion hosted by Freedom Hosting. The javascript exploit was injected into your browser if you had javascript enabled.

What the exploit does:

The JavaScript zero-day exploit that creates a unique cookie and sends a request to a random server that basically fingerprints your browser in some way, which is probably then correlated somewhere else since the cookie doesn't get deleted. Presumably it reports the victim's IP back to the FBI.

An iframe is injected into FH-hosted sites:

By: a guest on Aug 3rd, 2013

Which leads to this obfuscated code:

Javascript Mozilla Pastebin
Posted by Anonymous on Sun 4th Aug 02:52

By: a guest on Aug 3rd, 2013

FBI Hidden Service in connection with the JavaScript exploit:

Who's affected Time scales:

Anyone who accessed an FH site in the past two days with JavaScript enabled. Eric Eoin Marques was arrested on Sunday so that's the earliest possible date.

"In this paper we expose flaws both in the design and implementation of Tor’s hidden services that allow an attacker to measure the popularity of arbitrary hidden services, take down hidden services and deanonymize hidden services
Trawling for Tor Hidden Services: Detection, Measurement, Deanonymization"

The FBI Ran a Child Porn Site for Two Whole Weeks

On any other day one would say these sick perverts got what they deserved. Unfortunately the Feds are stepping far beyond just pedophiles in this latest issue.

The js inserted at Freedom Hosting? Nothing really, just an iframe inject script with a UUID embedded server-side.

The iframe then delivers an exploit kit that appears to be a JavaScript 0day leading to...something. It only attempts to exploit Firefox (17 and up) on Windows NT. There's definitely some heap spraying and some possible shell code. The suspect shell code block contains some strings that look to formulate an HTTP request, but I haven't been able to collect the final payload yet. The shell code also contains the UUID with which the exploit was delivered. Any UUID will work to get this part of the exploit.

I'm still pulling this little bundle of malware apart. So far, I've got that the attack is split across three separate files, each loaded into an iframe. Calls are made between the frames to further obfuscate the control flow. The 'content_2.html' and 'content_3.html' files are only served up if the request "looks like" Firefox and has a correct Referer header. The 'content_2.html' is loaded from the main exploit iframe and in turn loads 'content_3.html'.

Short version. Preliminary analysis: This little thing probably CAN reach out without going through Tor. It appears to be exploiting the JavaScript runtime in Firefox to download something.

UPDATE: The exploit only affects Firefox 17 and involves several JS heap-sprays. Note that the current Extended Support Release is Firefox 17, so this may also affect some large organizations using Firefox ESR.

The script will only attempt the exploit on Firefox 17, so I'm no longer worried about it being some new 0day. Enough of the "Critical" MFSAs are for various sorts of memory corruption that I don't have the time to find out if this is actually a new exploit or something seen before.

Logical outcomes from this?

1. FBI/NSA just shut down the #1 biggest hosting site and #1 most wanted person on Tor

2. Silkroad is next on their list, being the #2 most wanted (#1 was Child Porn, #2 is drugs)

3. Bitcoin and all crypto currencies set to absolutely CRASH as a result since the feds can not completely control this currency as they please.

I don't always call the Feds agenda transparent, but when i do, I say they can be trying harder.