Middle-aged Woman arrested for LulzSec Hacks: They're not all Teenage Boys

Hackers are always characterised as teenage boys, but two of the hackers arrested for Anonymous/LulzSec crimes in the States are women. One of them is a middle-aged woman, 42 year-old Tracy Ann Valenzuela. The other is 20 year old Mercedes Renee Haefer.

Both of them have Hispanic-sounding names and are from California. Can anyone confirm any more details?

The FBI have apparently arrested 16 people in the US. There has been one arrest in London and several arrests in Holland as well. The charges seem to relate to the attacks on PayPal which were retaliation for the service ditching Wikileaks.

So, women in hacking. We knew there must be some. In some ways I’m quite pleased by the news, it’s given me the opportunity to draw some hair onto the LulzSec icon. Though I’d love to know more about how she got involved and why.

They’ve popped up before – see the mysterious Kayla of Anonymous boards – who may or may not be a 16 year old girl. Iowa woman Laurelai Bailey was questioned by the police about her conversations on Anonymous message boards.

This is the list of names of people arrested so far:

Christopher Wayne Cooper, 23, aka “Anthrophobic”
Joshua John Covelli, 26, aka “Absolem” and “Toxic”
Keith Wilson Downey, 26
Mercedes Renee Haefer, 20, aka “No” and “MMMM”
Donald Husband, 29, aka “Ananon”
Vincent Charles Kershaw, 27, aka “Trivette,” “Triv” and “Reaper”
Ethan Miles, 33; James C. Murphy, 36
Drew Alan Phillips, 26, aka “Drew010”
Jeffrey Puglisi, 28, aka “Jeffer,” “Jefferp” and “Ji”
Daniel Sullivan, 22
Tracy Ann Valenzuela, 42
Christopher Quang Vo, 22

Anna Leach


  • Haefer is about the most un-hispanic last name I’ve ever heard. That shit is germanic.

  • @burkey, thanks for the update
    @anons – okay, good points.
    i’m the opposite on female oppression. i don’t like it either, what with being female and all. I’m very glad females are represented in Anon.
    I suppose the teenage boy stereotype came from the media, not from an actual survey of Anon members, but it is a pervasive stereotype. So i was just really interested to see the names turn up. Is there anything in the fact they’re both Hispanic or am I just reading way too much into a simple thing?

  • Hi—actually, the list came from an LA Times story which seemed to say all those people were arrested in California; however, when they updated the story, they left in the names, but did not specify who was from what state. So I don’t know that those two women are from California, only that they were among those arrested.
    I’ll update my blog on that. Sorry for the confusion.
    In the war on truth, some of the people on truth’s side are going to be women…it’s really that simple…

  • These are from Anonymous and have NOTHING TO DO with LulzSec. Where you even got this idea, I have no idea.

    “Though I’d love to know more about how she got involved and why.”
    Hmm, maybe the same reason any male gets involved? They liked what Anonymous was doing and joined. We have many femanons, why does this surprise you so much? Author kinda sounds like she’s stuck in the in the “women’s oppression” era.

    And yes I have more information: They both have facebook profiles with public photos, if you had done the slightest bit of research into what you’re reporting, this could have been a lot better…

  • I think Anonymous and LulzSec are great, we all need to keep wrestling with TPTB to maintain freedom online and elsewhere.

    My only worry is these stories will escalate and be manipulated to the point that TPTB have a ‘valid’ excuse and public backing to seriously change legislation as a result/repercussion – where they would otherwise be unable without Anonymous and LulzSec as a catalyst.

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