Anonymous attacks websites in a bid to help Assange

Anonymous attacking targets which draw their ire is nothing new. It's their main mode of operation, despite being an apparently leaderless group of people fighting for the greater good.

Attacking the government is one of their main pasttimes. They did some posturing and flexing about how they could handle the Mexican drug cartels last year, though this was quickly dropped by the 'leaderless' group of hacktivists.

If you really want to come to the forefront of the Anonymous hivemind, then you simply must mess with Julian Assange. The UK government has been trying to get Assange for a while now, so he can be extradited to stand trial for rape allegations. Whether he did or did not commit those crimes is disputed, but interestingly, Ecuador has offered him sanctuary to avoid extradition.

Anonymous have responded to the UK government's action, attacking the Ministry of Justice website. It appears to have been a concentrated DDoS attack, putting the website down. At the time of writing the site remains downed, and Anonymous have explained their actions as part of what they call "Operation Free Assange". They like their operations.

The Ministry of Justice has confirmed there are issues with accessing the site, and that they have no time frame for when it should be back. The Department for Work and Pensions, the Home Office, and the Prime Minister's website have all been targeted as well, though not with the same amount of aggression. It appears that the Ministry of Justice website is available intermittently, for I was able to access it after a longer period of time.

In addition to hitting the UK, they've turned their focuses on Sweden. They attacked the website for Primavi, leaving their calling card text.

The video embedded on the page is Assange's speech at the Ecuador embassy; watch it here.

Primavi's site has been disrupted for ten hours now, and it seems that Anonymous are intent on disrupting things as much as possible in their bid to 'help' Julian Assange. Yet if their help comes down to hacking sites, it might be worth wondering whether it will hinder him in the long run.

Source: Computer World UK

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