Thursday, December 9, 2010
Hackers have responded to the persecution of Julian Assange and Wikileaks by attacking the Visa and MasterCard websites. The group responsible calls itself “Anonymous.” It promotes the use of LOIC, short for Low Orbit Ion Cannon, software that lets volunteers engage in distributed denial of service attacks, also known as DDoS.
Anonymous warns it will attack Amazon.com next. The site was instructed by the Department of Homeland Security to pull the plug on hosting the Wikileaks website.
The retail website, however, is not above making a profit off the Wikileaks fiasco. Amazon UK currently sells a Kindle ebook containing some of the 250,000 purloined U.S. diplomatic documents.
The attacks are intended to put pressure on financial companies that recently cut ties with the WikiLeaks website over its planned publication of more than a quarter million U.S. Department of State classified cables, according to PC World.
Anonymous Operations members told CNN Thursday their goal was “freedom of information. Any and all information…. We will find and will attack those who stand against WikiLeaks and we will support WikiLeaks in everything they need.”
On Thursday, a man going by the name Coldblood told the BBC the attacks will continue, the New York Times reports. “This campaign is not over from what I’ve seen. It’s still going strong,” the man said. He identified himself as a a 22-year-old software engineer.
The shadowy group announced on Twitter it planned to attack Visa’s website on December 8 at approximately 1 p.m. Pacific time. Twitter suspended the group’s account and removed the message.
Twitter has been dealing with the Anonymous hacker group all week, reports SearchEngineWatch.com. They suspended their Twitter account, @Anon_Operation only to have numerous others appear in its place.
Another message posted by “Anonymous Operations” on the popular message site reads: “Remember, today we need you more than ever. We will throw everything we got at www.amazon.com — GET INVOLVED!”
Anonymous has also targeted Facebook. Facebook accounts used by Anonymous to co-ordinate its work were deleted, as well as groups it uses to communicate with supporters, according to Sky News.