In an unexpected message sent on Saturday from Lulz's Twitter account, the group reported it is disbanding
Lulz Security, a group of hackers who have attacked law enforcement sites, corporations and government agencies, has released a cache of allegedly stolen files in a move it says will mark the end of its two-month campaign.
In a message sent late on Saturday from the group's Twitter account, Lulz linked to a press release that reported it is disbanding after what it called a planned 50-day adventure, and referred to its crew of six.
The group has given no reason for its disbandment.
"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 in the press release uploaded to The Pirate Bay file sharing website.
"It is time to say bon voyage," the message concluded. "We must now sail into the distance."
Lulz's alleged exit came with the release of documents and login information apparently gleaned from gaming websites and corporate servers.
The largest group of documents, 338 files, appears to be internal documents from AT&T Inc, detailing its build out of a new wireless broadband network in the US. The network is set to go live this summer.
An AT&T spokesman could not immediately confirm the authenticity of the documents, the Reuters news agency reported.
Hiding behind complex levels of internet anonymity, Lulz Security has gained notice recently for hacking websites such as the CIA, US Senate, weapons manufacturer Lockheed Martin Corp. and multiple intrusions into various Sony websites.
In recent days the group also broke into the Department of Public Safety website of the US State of Arizona (AZDPS) and released hundreds of classified documents online in protest over the state's anti-immigration laws.
Observers believe Lulz - internet jargon for "laughs" - is an offshoot of Anonymous, a larger, more loosely organised group that attempts to mobilise hackers for attacks on targets it considers immoral.
"In the Lulz group, they know what they are doing when it comes to breaking into places," Luis Corrons, PandaLabs technical director, told AFP.
The group flaunted its notoriety with a telephone hotline for people to call and suggest targets for cyberattacks.
"These guys are upsetting a lot of people," said Corrons. "They think they will never be caught, and that could be their biggest mistake."
Earlier this week police in the UK charged a British teenager, Ryan Cleary, with targeting the website of Britain's Serious Organised Crime Agency with a Distributed Denial of Service attack (DDoS). These attacks overwhelm websites with requests, causing them slow down or become inaccessible.