Anonymous takes down Irish government sites

Hot on the heels of a host of attacks on government websites in protest of Internet piracy and censorship bills worldwide, Anonymous is now claiming responsibility for taking down several Irish government websites. According to The Journal, the websites of the Departments of Justice and Finance went down overnight, along with several other minor departments.

The Irish Department of Justice went down at around 11:20 PM (GMT) last night, after suffering from a DDoS attack (Distributed Denial of Service, for the uninitiated) organized by Twitter accounts claiming to be affiliated with Anonymous. It returned to operation within a few minutes, but went down again 11:40 and stayed down for nearly 2 hours.

A few minutes later, the Department of Finance website went down, returning to operation around the same time as the Department of Justice. Several smaller sites, including Freedom of Information unit, which runs on the same servers as the Department of Finance, followed a site related to human trafficking.

A Twitter account connected to the Swedish Anonymous ominously warned that the attacks were coordinated at a time when traffic to the websites was relatively low, but that they were only a 'wake up - warning shot.'

The attacks come in opposition to legislation that's being called the 'Irish SOPA,' due to its striking similarity with the US bill. The copyright reforms were introduced by the Irish Minister for Enterprise, Jobs and Innovation Sean Sherlock, who insists that it is just an affirmation of existing Irish law. A petition against it has already collected 31,000 signatures.

The legislation would give the Irish government the right to take down and block access to websites accused of copyright infringement. As with SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act), critics fear that it cold be misused as a tool for censorship, or to punish websites for the actions of a single user.

Anonymous, a (extremely) loose affiliation of hacktivists, has been extremely active over the last few days, bringing down government websites worldwide, including the US Department of Justice, and is currently claiming to be preparing a massive campaign in protest of the international anti-piracy trade agreement ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement).

Thanks to Neowin member xirtam for the tip.

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23 Comments

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Um.. how is it that when one site goes down another, then another goes down. Aren't these people simply using the same techniques to get in?

If a tornado is coming to your neighborhood, then you know to get your A** inside out of the rain, and barracade your windows.. protect yourself. If you don't you DESERVE to have your ass blown away.. just saying

So if anon breaks into one site.. then breaks into another the following day, it seems to me these stupid site admins need to be FIRED! Because they OBVIOUSLY don't know how to secure a site.

Because SOME sites have better protection apparently otherwise ALL sites would be down and we would have anarchy. These sites make it look SOOOO easy...

rijp said,
Um.. how is it that when one site goes down another, then another goes down. Aren't these people simply using the same techniques to get in?

If a tornado is coming to your neighborhood, then you know to get your A** inside out of the rain, and barracade your windows.. protect yourself. If you don't you DESERVE to have your ass blown away.. just saying

So if anon breaks into one site.. then breaks into another the following day, it seems to me these stupid site admins need to be FIRED! Because they OBVIOUSLY don't know how to secure a site.

Because SOME sites have better protection apparently otherwise ALL sites would be down and we would have anarchy. These sites make it look SOOOO easy...

sites such as google and facebook n twitter have tons of servers, governments probably don't have so many therefore are easier to take down and in the case of Sony they just brought PSN down themselves after been hacked once.also what the hackers do to various sites alters, sometimes they take card details and sometimes they de face the site, never know what going to happen

zikalify said,
Damn! I wanted to spend my evening browsing government websites :@

Exactly! - Who gives a f*ck if these sites are taken down.. What a joke.

I've never written a post like this on Neowin but this article is shocking.

"but went down against 11:40 and stayed down for nearly 2 hours."

"Several smaller sites, including Freedom of Information unit, which runs on the same servers as the Department of Finance, and a site related to human trafficking."

"critics fear that it cold be misused as a tool"

It's interesting that Ireland has a SOPA like bill as well. Since it's quite clear that the US Government attempted to muscle Greece to adopt similar legislation (And even helped them write it), can we accurately assume that this activity is much more wide spread?

Very scary.

Anonymous is so unpredictable. They lie low for a good while until something annoys them, then they're swarming all over the place, where news of them is a daily occurrence.

Colin McGregor said,
So how many people are gonna kiss anonymous ass when they are the reason SOPA is passed???
\

Seriously, they are making it easier for the bill to pass.

Colin McGregor said,
So how many people are gonna kiss anonymous ass when they are the reason SOPA is passed???

SOPA is about preventing piracy in an unconstitutional manner. Anonymous does DDoS which they can still do even if SOPA is passed. The two are not related at all. Your argument resembles the typical government BS scare tactics they would use to convince the people that don't know any better why they should pass SOPA and PIPA.

UndergroundWire said,

SOPA is about preventing piracy in an unconstitutional manner. Anonymous does DDoS which they can still do even if SOPA is passed. The two are not related at all. Your argument resembles the typical government BS scare tactics they would use to convince the people that don't know any better why they should pass SOPA and PIPA.

I love it when people try to explain things like we are stupid, obviously we know what they do it has no relation at all and won't stop them what we were ****ing say was by doing this DDoS will not stop SOPA bill pass. Stop trying to make excuses for Anon they are no better people than the government, using BS scripts to terrorize the internet.

TsMkLg068426 said,

stop them what we were ****ing say was by doing this DDoS will not stop SOPA bill pass. Stop trying to make excuses for Anon they are no better people than the government, using BS scripts to terrorize the internet.

!! +1

TsMkLg068426 said,

I love it when people try to explain things like we are stupid, obviously we know what they do it has no relation at all and won't stop them what we were ****ing say was by doing this DDoS will not stop SOPA bill pass. Stop trying to make excuses for Anon they are no better people than the government, using BS scripts to terrorize the internet.

Whose making excuses? Apparently I do have to explain things like you mentioned because I see it is needed. But the two ( the bill and the hacker group) have no relation. It is as plain as day. Sorry.

You point out what DDoS stands for yet you fail to mention what SOPA and ACTA are. I think more people on this forum are familiar with what DDoS is than what ACTA is. Just nitpicking.

UndergroundWire said,
You point out what DDoS stands for yet you fail to mention what SOPA and ACTA are. I think more people on this forum are familiar with what DDoS is than what ACTA is. Just nitpicking.

Not at all a bad idea, I made a couple of quick edits.

UndergroundWire said,
You point out what DDoS stands for yet you fail to mention what SOPA and ACTA are. I think more people on this forum are familiar with what DDoS is than what ACTA is. Just nitpicking.

Good point, ACTA has been flying under the radar waaay too long.

GS:mac

UndergroundWire said,
You point out what DDoS stands for yet you fail to mention what SOPA and ACTA are. I think more people on this forum are familiar with what DDoS is than what ACTA is. Just nitpicking.

At 3:00 Tokyo time today Poland signed ACTA as one of first EU countries to do so; Polish Internet has been on fire since Saturday - several popular sites were shut down for one or more hours, or "dimmed" in act of protest; also government sites were taken down by a group who claims to be polish Anons. The Prime Minister's Chancellery Facebook fanpage was spammed - they removed all comments; the parliament speaker's fb page was "hacked" - her profile picture was changed to one with Guy Fawkes mask.
There were public rallies against ACTA in most of the major Polish cities on Tuesday; there are further events planned throughout Poland in the coming days. Government claims that people don't understand ACTA, and that we can negotiate special appendices to the treaty, even if ACTA were fully compatible with our law. The Prime Minister said that gov will not to give in to the protest and Polish ambassador will sign ACTA.

As for EU - there is no information about activities in other countries and it seems that they will sign the treaty. The Court of Justice of the European Union issued an opinion about one of the clauses of the ACTA agreement which involves file downloading and monitoring - it violates the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, which Poland did not sign but rather opted-out along with the UK and Czech Republic.

Seems like only BBC and The Huffington Post did short news about us, which is rather sad.

insanelyapple said,

[...] The Prime Minister said that gov will not to give in to the protest and Polish ambassador will sign ACTA.
[...]

Today in "How to deny democracy"...

GS:mac