Anonymous, the online hacktivist group, has released thousands of names, email addresses, home addresses and phone numbers believed to be from myBart.org, an independent site that uses BART’s (San Francisco’s Bay Area Rapid Transit) open data services.

The hacking is part of a carefully planned effort by Anonymous to bring BART to its knees in retaliation for its shutdown of cell phone service Thursday night at some of its stations to disrupt planned demonstrations over a police shooting.

A notice on BART’s website says the following:

BART’s online services including web, mobile web, email and SMS are used by nearly 2 million customers every month. We’re disappointed to announce that the BART website may be subject to an online attack today, Sunday August 14, between noon and 6 pm, because this action will directly affect those customers who depend upon our site, as well as the developers who use BART’s open data services to serve BART customers.

We’re doing what we can to defend against any attack on the BART website. BART’s website infrastructure is wholly separate from any computer network involved in the operation of BART service. In the event that bart.gov is not available or working as you’d expect, we encourage you to use the 511.org website for alternative transit information.

Anonymous has posted a list of all the names and addresses on a miscellaneous website (we won’t currently be linking to) and also included the following message (click for large version)

Screen Shot 2011 08 14 at 21.00.03 520x243 Anonymous hacks SFs myBART website. Thousands of names, addresses & numbers released.

Anonymous issued a press release on Saturday claiming it would:

  1. Begin a “Black Fax and E-Mail Bomb action”, where it would fill every inbox and fax machine at BART with thousands of copies of its message claiming the outage was unacceptable. A list of those email addresses just been posted to Pastebin, a site commonly used by hackers to share text anonymously.
  2. It would remove BART’s website for exactly six hours. Intended to be twice as long as BART shut off cell phones for. This has yet to materialize.
  3. A “physical protest” will take place at the Civic Center Bart Station at 5PM Pacific Time. BART has issued a statement warning users of possible disruption to its train services on the day.

It also released the following video propaganda video in aid of the attack: