Timeline of events associated with Anonymous

(Redirected from Operation Tunisia)

Anonymous is a decentralized virtual community.[1] They are commonly referred to as an internet-based collective of hacktivists whose goals, like its organization, are decentralized. Anonymous seeks mass awareness and revolution against what the organization perceives as corrupt entities, while attempting to maintain anonymity. Anonymous has had a hacktivist impact.[2] This is a timeline of activities reported to be carried out by the group.

2007

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  • January: Radio host Hal Turner sued several online groups, alleging Anonymous "posted unauthorized copies of his radio shows online, attacked [his] server so as to make it unavailable, and placed unauthorized orders for goods, services and merchandise from third parties in [his] name." The case was dismissed in December for lack of response.[3]
  • December: A man was arrested in Toronto on charges of luring a child under the age of 14, attempting to invite sexual touching, attempted exposure, and other charges. Police stated that Anonymous, a cyber-vigilante group which trolls for pedophiles and then "outs" them, had targetted the suspect before law enforcement was involved, and cautioned that such interference could impede official investigations.[4][5][6]

2008

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  • February–December: Known as Project Chanology, Anonymous organized multiple in-person pickets in front of Churches of Scientology world-wide, starting February 10 and running throughout the year, achieving coordinated pickets in over 100 cities, thousands of protestors, and wearing Guy Fawkes masks.[9]
  • June: Anonymous claimed responsibility for attacking and defacing websites and forums of SOHH (Support Online Hip Hop) and AllHipHop, causing the sites to temporarily shut down. They also stole personal information about SOHH employees.[12] (See also SOHH § Defacement.)

2009

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  • January: Anonymous targeted California teen McKay Hatch who runs the No Cussing Club, a website against profanity. Hatch's home address, phone number, and other personal information were leaked on the internet, and his family received hate mail, obscene phone calls, bogus pizza deliveries, and pornography through the mail.[15][16][17]

2010

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  • January: Anonymous attacked websites of the governments of Tunisia and Zimbabwe over censorship issues related to WikiLeaks.[20]
  • July: Anonymous flooded the Oregon Tea Party's Facebook page when they found out that OTP had been using part of Anonymous' slogan, "We Are Legion". OTP surrendered, apologized and recanted.[23]
  • July: In response to Chelsea Manning's imprisonment and treatment after leaking classified information to WikiLeaks, Anonymous threatened to disrupt activities at Marine Corps Brig, Quantico by cyber-attacking communications, exposing private information of personnel, and other harassment methods. Military spokespersons responded that the threat has been referred to law enforcement and counterterrorism officials and requested an investigation.[24][25]
  • September: Anonymous targeted major pro-copyright and anti-piracy organizations, law firms, individuals, and entertainment industry websites in retaliation for DDoS attacks on torrent sites.[26][27] (See also Operation Payback.)
  • December: Anonymous promoted sifting through WikiLeaks to identify potentially overlooked cables, making short videos covering the topic, and flooding the internet with them.[30]

2011

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  • January 3+: Anonymous got involved during the Tunisian Revolution and engaged in DDoS attacks on key Tunisian websites—including the president, prime minister, ministry of industry, ministry of foreign affairs, and the stock exchange—taking down at least 8 websites and defacing several others. Anonymous distributed information and scripts to help Tunisians bypass government censorship, and Anonymous' own website also came under DDoS attack.[31][32][33][34]
  • January 9: Anonynous hacked and defaced the website of Fine Gael, an Irish political party.[35]

Attack on HBGary Federal

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On the weekend of February 5–6, 2011, Aaron Barr, the chief executive of the security firm HBGary Federal, announced that his firm had successfully infiltrated the Anonymous group, and although he would not hand over details to the police, he would reveal his findings at a later conference in San Francisco. In retaliation for Aaron Barr's claims, members of the group Anonymous hacked the website of HBGary Federal and replaced the welcome page with a message stating that Anonymous should not be messed with, and that the hacking of the website was necessary to defend itself. Using a variety of techniques, including social engineering and SQL injection,[38] Anonymous went on to take control of the company's e-mail, dumping 68,000 e-mails from the system, erasing files, and taking down their phone system.[39] The leaked emails revealed the reports and company presentations of other companies in computer security such as Endgame systems who promise high quality offensive software, advertising "subscriptions of $2,500,000 per year for access to 0day exploits".[40]

Among the documents exposed was a PowerPoint presentation entitled "The Wikileaks Threat", put together by HBGary Federal along with two other data intelligence firms for Bank of America in December.[41] Within the report, these firms created a list of important contributors to WikiLeaks; they further developed a strategic plan of attack against the site. As TechHerald explains, "the plan included pressing a journalist in order to disrupt his support of the organization, cyber attacks, disinformation, and other potential proactive tactics." The report specifically claims that Glenn Greenwald's support was key to WikiLeaks' ongoing survival.[42][43][44]

Anonymous also personally attacked Aaron Barr by taking control of his Twitter account, posting Mr Barr's supposed home address and social security number.[45]

In response to the attacks, founder of HBGary Federal, Greg Hoglund, responded to journalist Brian Krebs, "They didn't just pick on any company, we try to protect the US Government from hackers. They couldn't have chosen a worse company to pick on."[45] After the attacks, Anonymous continued to clog up HBGary Federal fax machines, and made threatening phone calls.[46]

Operation Ouroboros

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On February 16, 2011, the group supposedly[47] wrote an open letter to the Westboro Baptist Church, stating: "Cease & desist your protest campaign in the year 2011... close your public Web sites. Should you ignore this warning... the propaganda & detestable doctrine that you promote will be eradicated; the damage incurred will be irreversible, and neither your institution nor your congregation will ever be able to fully recover."[48][49][50] On February 19, 2011, the church responded, telling Anonymous to "bring it on" and calling them, among other things, "a puddle of pimple-faced nerds".[51][52][53] Anonymous subsequently denied the authenticity of the threat,[47] suggesting that someone from outside Anonymous had made the posting.[53][54][55] Due to their website being openly editable by anyone, it is unknown who made the post. Anonymous responded with a press release calling the Westboro Church "professional trolls" stating that they believe that it was a member of the Westboro Church making an attempt to provoke an attack, thus acting as a honeypot which would both allow the church to retaliate against Internet service providers in court, and to gain it further publicity.[53][56] They also claimed that they had more pressing matters to attend to, namely the support of the protests that led to the 2011 Libyan civil war.[57] That said, Anonymous later suggested tactics for those who wished to attack Westboro nevertheless, avoiding DDoS in favor of sending "prostitutes, preferably male", and in general to "rape their asses in the most unpredictable ways possible".[56]

"Our best guess is that you heard about us on that newfangled TV of yours and thought we might be some good money for your little church."
—Anonymous response to the Westboro issue[55]

Anonymous indicated that an attack would be self-defeating, stating: "When Anonymous says we support free speech, we mean it. We count Beatrice Hall among our Anonymous forebears: 'I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.'"[58] Nonetheless, Westboro's website at godhatesfags.com suffered an attack.[59][60][61] Another hacktivist by the name of Jester claimed to bring down the websites from the Westboro Baptist Church on his Twitter account.[62][63][64]

2011–2012 Operation Empire State Rebellion

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On March 14, 2011, Anonymous began releasing emails it said were obtained from Bank of America.[65] According to the group, the files show evidence of "corruption and fraud", and relate to the issue of improper foreclosures. They say that a former employee named Brian Penny[66] from Balboa Insurance, a firm which used to be owned by BofA, appeared to be a reputable insider in the force placed insurance market,[67][68] a market which, in 2012, began getting more and more coverage from various government and media sources, including the New York Department of Finance,[69] 50 State Attorney General Coalition,[70] the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,[71] and large class action lawsuits.[72] Balboa Insurance is now owned by Australian Reinsurance company QBE,[73] while Brian privately consults various agencies and institutions on the inside workings of mortgage/insurance tracking systems and force placed insurance[74] while maintaining a blog about his experience as a whistleblower.[75]

Operation Sony

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Anonymous announced their intent to attack Sony websites in response to Sony's lawsuit against George Hotz and, specifically due to Sony's gaining access to the IP addresses of all the people who visited George Hotz's blog as part of the libel action, terming it an 'offensive against free speech and internet freedom'[76] Although Anonymous admitted responsibility to subsequent attacks on the Sony websites, Anonymous branch AnonOps denied that they were the cause behind a major outage of the PlayStation Network in April 2011. However, as Anonymous is a leaderless organization, the possibility remains that another branch of the group is responsible for the outage, though screenshots of AnonOps promotion of the attack still exist.[77][78]

June

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  • June 12: Anonymous claimed responsibility for a DDoS attack of the website of the National Police Corps of Spain, asserting it was a legitimate form of peaceful protest in retaliation for the arrest of three individuals alleged to be associated with acts of cyber civil disobedience attributed to Anonymous.[80]
  • June 15: The group launched DDoS attacks on ninety-one Malaysian government websites in retaliation for their censoring of websites.[81]
  • June 28: Anonymous announced that within the next 24 hours, it would hack into the website of the Knesset, the legislature of Israel, and knock it offline. It was stated that the planned attacks were a response to alleged hacking attacks by Israeli intelligence such as the Stuxnet virus, a computer virus which allegedly was created by Israeli and U.S. intelligence and targeted the Iranian nuclear program.[87]

Operation Anti-Security

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The group collaborated with LulzSec to hack the websites of a number of government and corporate sources and release information from them.[88][89] As well as targeting American sites, Anonymous also targeted government sites in Tunisia, Anguilla, Brazil, Zimbabwe, Turkey, and Australia. On July 21, Anonymous released two PDFs allegedly taken from NATO.[90]

Operation Facebook

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In August 2011, someone created an account on Twitter with the name OP_Facebook and announced the "Operation Facebook". According to the links on the post, Anonymous was going to take down Facebook on November 5, 2011.[91] The date "November 5" is believed to be a reference to V for Vendetta, where the character "V" conducts his plans every fifth of November in memory of Guy Fawkes. This operation isn't assuredly an Anonymous one. There was an earlier OpFacebook that was abandoned, and this was an attempted revival.[92] The plan was contentious and does not appear to be supported by the majority of those who say they are part of Anonymous.[93]

Operation BART

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In August 2011, in response to Bay Area Rapid Transit's shutdown of cell phone service in an attempt to disconnect protesters from assembling in response to a police shooting, as well as the shooting itself, Anonymous sent out a mass email/fax bomb to BART personnel and organized multiple mass physical protests at the network's Civic Center station.[94] Anonymous also hacked the BART website, releasing the personal information of 102 BART police officers,[95] as well as account information for about 2,000 customers.[96]

Shooting Sheriffs Saturday

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In an event dubbed "Shooting Sheriffs Saturday," Anonymous hacked 70 (mostly rural) law enforcement websites and released 10 GB of leaked emails, training files, informant information and other information.[97][98] The name is likely a reference to the song "I Shot the Sheriff" by Bob Marley.

Support of Occupy Wall Street

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A member holding an Anonymous flier at Occupy Wall Street, a protest that the group actively supported, September 17, 2011

Several contingents of Anonymous have given support to the Occupy Wall Street movement, with members attending local protests and blogs run by members covering the movement.[99][100][101]

Operation Syria

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In early August, Anonymous hacked the Syrian Defense Ministry website and replaced it with a vector image of the pre-Ba'athist flag, a symbol of the pro-democracy movement in the country, as well as a message supporting the 2011 Syrian uprising and calling on members of the Syrian Army to defect to protect protesters.[102]

Operation DarkNet

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In October 2011, the collective campaigned against child pornography protected by anonymous hosting techniques. They temporarily DDoSed 40 child porn sites, published the usernames of over 1500 people frequenting one of those websites, and invited the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation and Interpol to follow up.[103]

Opposition to Los Zetas

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On October 6, 2011, Anonymous released a video stating that Los Zetas had kidnapped one of the group's members, and threatened that unless the hostage was freed, they would publish personal information about members of the cartel and their collaborators in politics, police, military, and business, which might lead to their prosecution by Mexican authorities, or targeting by rival cartels. The website of Gustavo Rosario Torres, a former Tabasco state prosecutor, was subsequently defaced with a message suggesting his involvement with the organization.[104] According to Anonymous Iberoamerica blog, in early November Los Zetas reportedly freed the kidnapped victim without knowledge of its Anonymous affiliation.[105][106]

However, following widespread news coverage of the video, reporters did not find evidence of a previous Anonymous action matching the description given, and found little evidence of support among Anonymous members, particularly in Mexico.[107][108] Reporters noted a lack of details and police reports[109][110][111] and that the Veracruz state attorney general couldn't confirm the kidnapping.[112][113]

Operation Brotherhood Takedown

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On November 7, 2011, Anonymous released a warning threat to the Muslim Brotherhood that they would take down major websites belonging to their organization.[114] On November 12 the Muslim Brotherhood released a statement detailing the extent of the attack and that four websites were temporarily taken down.[115] On November 12, 2011, another video was released claiming the attack would continue until November 18.[116]

John Pike incident

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In response to the UC Davis pepper-spray incident, Anonymous released the personal information of John Pike, the officer that pepper-sprayed peaceful protestors.[117]

Attack on Stratfor

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On December 24, claims were made that Anonymous stole thousands of e-mail addresses and credit card information from security firm Stratfor. Reportedly, Anonymous commented that this is because the data was unencrypted, however some members of Anonymous denied the group was involved.[118] The hackers included Jeremy Hammond, who worked with Anonymous to release Stratfor's 5,543,061 emails to WikiLeaks. The emails revealed Stratfor's surveillance of groups such as Occupy Wall Street and protestors of the Bhopal disaster.[119][120]

Operation Pharisee

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Operation Pharisee was an attack organized via social media such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube[121] against the Vatican website for World Youth Day 2011. It was unsuccessful, despite a denial-of-service attack resulting 34 times normal traffic, and well-documented[122] due to the efforts of Imperva, the security firm employed by the Vatican.[123]

Operation Deepthroat

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Anonymous, along with 4chan's /b/ board, Reddit, Tumblr and Funnyjunk, teamed together to make a raid on 9gag called Operation Deepthroat. The raid was separated in multiple teams: The first team, the Alpha Team, spammed "horrifying" images of child pornography, gore, furries and scat on 9gag's site, followed by fake accounts made by 4chan, Anonymous, Reddit, Tumblr and Funnyjunk voting the spam up, effectively overloading the servers. The second team, the Gold Team, used the Low Orbit Ion Cannon and the High Orbit Ion Cannon (LOIC and HOIC, respectively), and fired on 9gag, which DDoS'd the entire site down. The third team, the Red Team, was tasked to spread the information of the OP on 4chan, Reddit, Tumblr and Funnyjunk, and also supported the other teams. The fourth and final team, the White Team, was tasked with spamming chat sites such as Omegle and Chatroulette with inappropriate messages, such as "9gag.com is the place for Child Pornography!", in order to tarnish 9gag's "wholesome" and "family-friendly" name. The reason behind this whole operation began when 9gag took several of 4chan's memes and called them theirs, followed by making a legion called the '9gag army', a ripoff of Anonymous. The operation began on December 21, 2011, at 12:00 AM, and ended at 11:59 PM. 9gag was mainly offline for the next few days, except for some servers which managed to protect themselves from the LOIC and HOIC. Prior to the operation, 4chan users used fake accounts to trick 9gaggers into DDoS'ing themselves, saying the coordinates were that of 4chan. The pre-raid attack was mostly ineffective, however, as only a few servers went down.

2012

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CSLEA hack

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In January 2012, Anonymous hacked the website of the California Statewide Law Enforcement Association to protest police brutality.[124]

Occupy Nigeria

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In solidarity with Occupy Nigeria, Anonymous has joined forces with the People's Liberation Front and the Naija Cyber Hactivists of Nigeria. Anonymous promised "a relentless and devastating assault upon the web assets of the Nigerian government" in support of Occupy Nigeria. This was in protest to the removal of fuel subsidy that the majority of impoverished Nigerians depend upon for their very existence, causing the price of fuel and transportation to skyrocket and therefore extreme hardship for the majority of Nigerians. On January 13, the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission website was hacked, with a false report of the arrest of people involved in the oil sector replacing the normal page.[125]

Operation Megaupload

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In retaliation for the shut down of the file sharing service Megaupload and the arrest of four workers,[126] Anonymous DDoSed the websites of UMG (the company responsible for the lawsuit against Megaupload), the United States Department of Justice, the United States Copyright Office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the MPAA, Warner Brothers Music, the RIAA, and the HADOPI the afternoon of January 19, 2012.[127] The operations by Anonymous were speculated to have been driven further by anger over the House of Representatives' Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Senate's Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA).[128]

Anti-ACTA activism in Europe

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On January 21, 2012, a series of DDoS attacks on Polish government websites took place, for which the Anonymous took responsibility and referred to as "the Polish Revolution".[129] The group via their Twitter account stated it was a revenge for upcoming signing of ACTA agreement by the Polish government. Starting with websites of the Sejm, Polish Prime Minister, President, Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, later on websites of the police, Internal Security Agency, Ministry of Foreign Affairs were also blocked. The presumed attack was further strengthened by the media coverage which resulted in extremely high interest of public opinion, followed up by blackout of popular Polish websites on 24th[130] and protests of thousands of people on January 24 and 25, in major cities of Poland,[131] against signing ACTA. Other suspected targets were the websites of Paweł Graś - the government's spokesman (blocked after Graś denied the attacks ever took place), the website of PSL (blocked after Eugeniusz Kłopotek, a member of the party, supported ACTA on air of the major TV station). Governmental sites in France's presidential website[132] and Austria's Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Economy and also the website of the Federal Chancellor[133] were also cracked and paralyzed.

Anonymous in Slovenia announced opposition against the Slovenian signing of the ACTA and have posted video threats on various websites against the government officials, as well as against Nova Ljubljanska Banka (commonly known as NLB), accusing the latter of corruption.[134] On February 4, 2012, The NLB was a victim of a cyber attack and was offline for one hour, while public demonstrations were held in the capital of Ljubljana and in Maribor. Some estimated 3000 people gathered in the capital, while around 300 protested in Maribor.[135]

Operation Russia

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Unidentified hackers cracked email boxes of some prominent pro-Kremlin activists and officials, including Vasily Yakemenko, head of the Federal Agency for Youth Affairs, Kristina Potupchik, press secretary for Nashi youth movement, and Oleg Khorokhordin, deputy head of the Department for Internal Affairs at the Presidential Administration. Since February 1, links to contents of the mailboxes have been appearing on @OP_Russia Twitter account. The hackers confirmed they consider themselves a part of the Anonymous movement; "We are Anonymous", they stated in an interview.[136][137] The information discovered enabled many to accuse Yakemenko and his colleagues in paying some influential bloggers, as well as numerous trolls, for publishing stories and commenting in favour of Vladimir Putin on negative press articles on the Internet.[138][139][140]

Boston Police Department attacks

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On February 3, 2012, Anonymous hacked a website belonging to the Boston Police Department to protest the eviction of Occupy Wall Street protestors.[141] BPD later responded with a sarcastic video of their own.[142]

Preventing vote tampering

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In 2012, Anonymous claims to have added a firewall they called The Great Oz, allegedly designed to prevent election tampering in the United States.[143]

Syrian Government E-mail Hack

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On February 6, 2012, Anonymous broke into the mail server of the Syrian Ministry of Presidential Affairs, gaining access to some 78 inboxes of Bashar al-Assad's staffers in the process. One of the email files was a document preparing Assad for his December 2011 interview with ABC's Barbara Walters. One of the passwords commonly used by Assad's office accounts was "12345."[144]

In July 2012, Anonymous gave over 2.4 million e-mails to WikiLeaks.[145]

AntiSec Leak and CIA Attack

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On Friday, February 10, 2012, Anonymous claimed responsibility for taking down the Central Intelligence Agency's website for more than 5 hours. Several servers went back up while others stayed down.[146] This followed a conversation leak, in which Anonymous took responsibility, between FBI and Scotland Yard officials discussing members of Anonymous being put on trial as well as other topics on the group, which took place a week before.[147] On March 6, 2012, Donncha O'Cearbhaill was charged in connection with the leak.[148] He was released 24-hours later.[149]

Interpol Attack

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Following Interpol's announcement on February 28 that they made arrests of 25 suspected members of the hacking activist group Anonymous in Europe and South America, their site went down for a moment.[150]

AIPAC Attack

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On March 4, 2012, Anonymous took down the American Israel Public Affairs Committee website. An AIPAC spokesman was questioned on the matter but did not respond.[151] A video titled "Anonymous: Message to AIPAC" was uploaded on YouTube earlier the same day.[152][importance?]

Vatican website DDoS Attacks

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The official website of the Vatican was brought down temporarily by a DDoS attack from Anonymous on March 7, 2012. Later that day the website recovered. Anonymous has also attempted to take the site down in 2011 but the attempt did not succeed. They claimed that their attack was not targeted against the followers of the Catholic Church but against the Church itself, which Anonymous viewed as corrupt.[153]

On March 12 the Vatican's official website was brought down for a few hours by a second DDoS attack. Anonymous also hacked Vatican Radio and gained access to the Vatican Radio database in protest against the Vatican Radio allegedly using "repeaters with power transmission largely outside the bounds of the law."[154]

Bureau of Justice leak

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On March 21, 2012, 1.7GB of data was stolen from the United States Bureau of Justice Statistics by Anonymous. The leak reportedly contained "shiny things such as internal emails and the entire database dump."[155][156]

Taking down Monsanto's Hungarian website

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On March 16 the official website of Monsanto's Hungarian website collapsed and wasn't restored until March 26.[157]

Symantec source code leak

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In March 2012, people claiming to be a part of Anonymous leaked the source code for old versions of Norton AntiVirus and Norton Utilities.[158]

April 2012 Chinese attack

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In April 2012, Anonymous hacked 485 Chinese government websites, some more than once, to protest the treatment of their citizens. They urged people to "fight for justice, fight for freedom, [and] fight for democracy".[159][160][161]

Operation Bahrain and Formula One attacks

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On April 21, Anonymous defaced the official site of Formula One, in protest against the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix. The race was the subject of ongoing controversy, as it was being held during ongoing anti-government protests, with the support of the government.[162][163] Anonymous posted a press release criticising the decision to hold the race despite the violent crackdowns,[164] and posted data of ticket sales for the event with sensitive information — particularly the credit card numbers of spectators — redacted. Other sites related to the sport and the Bahraini government were also the subject of distributed denial-of-service attack.[165]

Occupy Philippines

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On April 21, 2012 busabos of Anonymous Philippines attacked the China University Media Union website, as a retaliation against alleged Chinese hackers who defaced the University of the Philippines website, which claimed that the Scarborough Shoal is Chinese territory. Anonymous left a message that the Scarborough Shoal is the Philippines' territory. On April 25, 2012, busabos of Anonymous #OccupyPhilippines warned that they had not yet started their attack against Chinese websites. The members that can be counted in hand called the cyber attacks were a result of the 2012 Scarborough Shoal standoff.[166][167]

Operation India

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On May 17, 2012, Anonymous launched an attack against the websites of the India Supreme Court and the then-ruling Congress party in reaction to internet service providers blocking popular video sites like Vimeo as well as file-sharing sites like The Pirate Bay.[168]

Operation Quebec

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Guy Fawkes mask seen at a protest in Montreal on May 22, 2012, against Bill 78 as part of the 2012 Quebec protests.

On May 20, 2012, Anonymous launched Opération Québec in reaction to the adoption of Bill 78 by the government of Quebec, an act restricting the freedom of association in this Canadian province after several weeks of student protests.[169] A video was released urging the governing Liberal Party of Quebec to let the citizens protest.

On May 21, the websites of the Liberal Party of Quebec, of the Ministry of Public Security of Quebec as well as a government site on police ethics were DDoSed.[170][171]

Anonymous then threatened to disrupt the Formula 1 Grand Prix of Canada, to be held between June 7 and 10 in Montreal, the same way they did for the Bahrain Grand Prix. They claimed to have accessed personal information stored in the F1 website.[172]

On May 30, Anonymous leaked a video called "DVD Gouverne (mental)", a 2 hours long footage from Sagard, Quebec where a party for the wife of Paul Desmarais of Power Corporation had been held in 2008.[173] Among the guests were former US president George H. Bush, premier Jean Charest of Quebec, former Canadian prime ministers Jean Chrétien and Brian Mulroney, former Québec premier Lucien Bouchard, former governor general of Canada Adrienne Clarkson, journalist Charlie Rose, singers Robert Charlebois and Hiromi Omura, lyricist Luc Plamondon and conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin.[174]

Operation Cyprus

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An Anonymous video was released on June 8, 2012, claiming that an attack against the government of Cyprus would take place due to reasons of government corruption, media misinformation and the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement[175] On June 26, DDoS attacks took place against 47 websites of the Republic of Cyprus, which were taken down for 15 hours.[176] The government stated that it was a coordinated attack by Anonymous.

Operation Japan

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On June 26, 2012, the website of the Japanese Business Federation, was taken offline, with Anonymous claiming this was part of "Operation Japan". The reason for their action was the new amendments to the copyright laws in Japan.[177] For those found to have illegally copied material such as music, DVDs or Blu-ray discs, fines could run as high as $25,000 and carry a sentence of two years in prison, according to CNET Japan.[178]

Operation Anaheim

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On July 25, 2012, Anonymous launched an online protest in response to the Anaheim police shooting. It began with the release of the personal information of some of the top officers, including police chief John Welter.[179]

AAPT attack

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In July 2012, Anonymous hacked Australian ISP AAPT and later leaked 40 GB of partially redacted customer data to protest data retention policy.[180]

Attack on the Mexican PRI party

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On July 6, 2012, as part of the Yo Soy 132 student protest movement, the Mexican branch of Anonymous defaced the PRI party website, the party that held the power of the country for 70 years and that the 132 movement accused of human rights violations during that period. Anonymous hacked the site leaving slogans against the electoral fraud and the imminent return of the PRI party to power.[181][182][183]

Peña's birthday present

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On July 20, 2012, a second attack on a PRI related website was performed as part of the Yo Soy 132 student protest movement, by the Mexican branch of Anonymous. This time Anonymous did it on the birthday of president elect Peña Nieto, and as "a gift" they left a picture of Peña next to slogans against electoral fraud and a penis shaped birthday cake.[184]

Operation Myanmar

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On August 10, 2012, Anonymous launched a DDoS attack and defacement of more than 100 Myanmar websites, all hackers from all over the world joined this operation as a protest for killing Muslim Rohingya in Myanmar.[185] Myanmar's hackers also made a lot of counterattacks.[186]

Uganda LGBT rights

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On August 13, 2012, Anonymous hacked two Uganda government websites to protest the country's strict anti-gay laws.[187]

Hong Kong National Education

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In mid-September 2012, Anonymous hackers threatened the Hong Kong government organization, known as National Education Centre. In their online video, Anonymous members claimed responsibility for leaking classified related government documents and taking down the National Education Centre website, after the Hong Kong government has repeatedly ignored months of wide-scale protests against the establishment of a new core Moral and National Education curriculum for children from 6–18 years of age. The new syllabus has come under heavy criticism and international media attention, as it does not award students based on how much factual information is learned, but instead grades and evaluates students based on their level of emotional attachment and approval of the Chinese Communist Party.[188]

Philippine Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012

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Anonymous Philippines launched a series of attacks against several websites of the Philippine government to protest against the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012. The hackers urged for the revisions of the cybercrime law. On September 26, Anonymous defaced several websites, including that of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and the Philippine National Police.[189][190] They claim that the law violates freedom of expression and described the law as "most notorious act ever witnessed in the cyber-history". On October 1, they hacked again several government websites in an operation dubbed as "Bloody Monday" and asked for "a revision of the [Cybercrime Law] for the betterment of the Filipino netizens."[189] In February 2014 the Philippine Supreme Court ruled out the online libel to be unconstitutional because of its some provisions.[191]

Release of Westboro Baptist Church Personal Information

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Anonymous re-posted the names, addresses, and emails of the prominent members of the Westboro Baptist Church on December 16, 2012, due to announced plans to picket the funerals of the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting,[192] followed by saying that God would protect their site. They also caused several DDOS attacks on the site itself, hacked the social media accounts of the members involved, and started a whitehouse.org petition to get the Church legally branded as a Hate Group.[193][194]

2013

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Steubenville rape case

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In early 2013, the group released an incriminating video, photographs and tweets from the Steubenville High School football team allegedly involved in a gang rape of an underage girl in rural Ohio. They also released a number of e-mails and photos hacked from the e-mail account of one of the football programs boosters, whom they alleged to have helped cover up the case.[195]

Attack on the Mexican Army website

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On January 13, 2013, the SEDENA (the Mexican Army) website was penetrated by the Anonymous branch in Mexico, and all the information found on the vulnerable servers was disclosed (including usernames and passwords). The content of the site was changed for a video with images of the riots that occurred during Peña Nieto's presidential inauguration (on December 1, 2013), and a voice in the background pronounces the Zapatista manifesto. The reason behind the attack was in retaliation for what they called the return of an oppressive government imposed by electoral fraud.[196]

Aaron Swartz Suicide

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In January 2013, the group attacked and defaced the United States Sentencing Commission website turning it into a game page repeatedly after which traffic to the website made it crash following the suicide of Reddit co-founder and activist Aaron Swartz. Swartz was accused of stealing materials from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with intent to distribute them freely.[197]

Federal Reserve

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The Federal Reserve was hacked by Anonymous in February 2013.[198]

Operation North Korea

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On April 2, 2013, a professional IT webzine BGR carried out an article stating that hacker group Anonymous has started the 'Operation Free Korea.' This calls for 'controversial leader Kim Jong-un [to] resign', 'install free democracy' 'abandon its nuclear ambitions' 'uncensored Internet access' etc. The hackers also proclaimed that if North Korea do not accede to their demand, they will wage "Cyber War."[199] On April 3, 2013, hacker group identifying itself as Anonymous claimed it had stolen all 15,000 user passwords as part of a cyberwar against the DPRK.[200] A few days later, Anonymous claimed to have hacked into the Uriminzokkiri main website, and the Twitter and Flickr pages representing the website.[201]

Instead, a picture posted Thursday on the North's Flickr site shows Kim's face with a pig-like snout and a drawing of Mickey Mouse on his chest. Underneath, the text reads: "Threatening world peace with ICBMs and Nuclear weapons/Wasting money while his people starve to death." It found common ground with its alleged arch-enemy and hacktivist The Jester in which the latter had claimed responsibility for the cyberattacks against Air Koryo and other North Korean websites.[202]

On June 22, 2013, Anonymous claimed that it managed to steal military documents from North Korea, and that the documents would be released on June 25, the day the Korean War started. However, no such documents appear to have been released.[203]


Op Israel

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OpIsrael was a coordinated cyber-attack by anti-Israel individuals and Anonymous-affiliated groups that target websites perceived as Israeli[204][205] The attack, mostly denial of service assaults, was coordinated to coincide with Holocaust Remembrance Day.[206] OpIsrael's stated goal was to "erase Israel from the internet".[207][208] The attack targeted several government online operations banking and commerce sites, but most of the cyber attacks were repelled, with no significant damage done, although an attack may have succeeded in temporarily taking down the Central Bureau of Statistics site. Media and small business sites were also targeted, and some attacks succeeded in temporarily replacing some of homepages with anti-Israel slogans.[208][209] However, there were several Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, and web sites from the alleged hackers making false claims to have "caused Israel to lose $5 billion" and "Tel Aviv loses all Internet connection. It was one of Anonymous's biggest failures"[210]

Nir Goldshlager a famous "white hat" hacker and CEO of Break Security Goldshlager, told reporters that OpIsrael hackers "lacked the sophistication and knowledge...while they told many lies to enhance their reputations."[210] Israeli hackers responded to OpIsrael by taking down the OpIsrael website and replacing it with pro-Israel statements and the Israeli national anthem, Hatikvah. In addition, they brought down anti-Israeli sites like Hezbollah's and Islamic Jihad's websites and targeted servers belonging to hackers and broke into the personal computers of the European leaders of the operation and told them to look for the facts and not believe everything they see on the Internet.[210][211]

2012 Cleveland police shooting incident

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In December 2012, Cleveland police fired 137 rounds at a car, killing its two occupants.[212] Anonymous responded in April 2013 by releasing the personal information of the officers involved.[213] 12 officers were later fired or disciplined for their role in the shooting, although criminal charges are still being considered by a grand jury.[212]

Rehtaeh Parsons

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In response to the suicide of Rehtaeh Parsons and the lack of action on the part of Canadian authorities, Anonymous threatened to release the personal information of the rapists. However, the group claimed to back down from the threat following pleas from Parsons' mother, Leah.[214] The group has staged protests outside the Royal Canadian Mounted Police headquarters in Halifax.[215]

Sabah Crisis

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In March 2013 during the Lahad Datu standoff tension in Sabah due to the clashes between the Royal Army of the Sultanate of Sulu and Malaysian security Forces. A Cyberwar sparks between Philippines and Malaysia. According to the Philippine Cyber Army the Malaysian hackers appeared to have started the attacks and defacement on Philippine websites, posting online threats and videos meaning to send a message to the Filipinos to keep away from the region of Sabah.[216] In response to their attacks the Philippine Cyber Army defaced 175 Malaysian sites (including state-owned pages). The Mcafee Lab Researchers in their 2013 Threats Report placed the Philippine Cyber Army in the list of Global Threats on hacktivism.[217] The Philippine Cyber Army are close to Anonymous.[217]

Philippine Coast Guard incident

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On May 9, 2013, a number of Philippine Coast Guard soldiers fired at an unarmed Taiwanese fishing boat, Guang Da Xing No. 28, and killed a Taiwanese fisherman in international waters. On May 10, Hackers recognizing themselves as "AnonTAIWAN" hacked into Philippine Official websites asking for the Philippines' government to apologize to Taiwan's government. They interfered with government official websites of the Philippines, causing inconveniences for the Philippine General Election. Its resulted in great difficulty and delay in making general access through the Philippine government websites at the time of elections.[218]

In May 2013, Anonymous published the personal information of various English Defence League members online in what Anonymous said was the first part of an attempt to destroy the far right protest movement.[219]

Public NSA documents

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On June 7, 2013, Anonymous released what was claimed to be secret documents related to the NSA. In reality, the documents were already publicly available.[220]

Hawthorne dog shooting incident

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On June 30, 2013, a Hawthorne, California police officer, Jeffrey Salmon of Torrance, was filmed shooting a dog and arresting his owner. Anonymous responded by issuing a video threat to the police department.[221] The city website also suffered a DDoS attack, although it is unclear if Anonymous was involved.[222]

Nigeria anti-gay laws

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On July 4, 2013, Anonymous hacked the national website of Nigeria after the country passed laws that would make homosexuality punishable by up to 14 years in prison.[223]

The GCSB

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Anonymous NZ, a New Zealand-based offshoot of Anonymous, carried out its first operation by staging a DDoS on the web site of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB), following the passage of law changes that allowed the electronic intelligence agency to surveil New Zealand citizens. In addition, the web sites of politicians who supported the law changes were also shut down by Anonymous NZ.[224]

Operation Singapore

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From August 20, 2013, to November 5, 2013, the group launched attacks on various websites including Ang Mo Kio Town Council, National Museum of Singapore which they leaked 3,600 emails, IP addresses and names from,[225] PAP Community Foundation, and The Straits Times.[226]

National Party-linked websites attacks

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Anonymous New Zealand claimed attacks on National Party-linked websites in protest against the GCSB Bill have had no thanks from spied-on internet mogul Kim Dotcom.[224]

Support of anti-PDAF movement

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Anonymous Philippines has hacked 115 government websites, prompting Philippine law enforcement agencies to go after them, citing the unnecessary use of hacking.[227] The NBI has been ordered to probe into the hacking of government websites.[228] While a few Senators have downplayed the attacks, they were willing to listen to their grievances,[229] Senator Trillanes IV expressed alarm with the group's capabilities, suggesting the possibility of the group to hack government websites since "it could compromise State operations and data storage."[229]

2014

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#OpJustina

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In response to the controversial custodial case of Justina Pelletier in which the Boston's Children Hospital alleged her parents of child abuse while Justina was believed to have contracted a mitochondrial disorder, Anonymous performed DDOS attacks against the hospital. As a result, a member was arrested after an unsuccessful flight attempt to Cuba.[230][231]

Operation Ferguson

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Anonymous posted a video warning to the Ferguson, Missouri, police, admonishing them for fatally shooting Mike Brown, an unarmed African American teenager, and swearing revenge if any protesters demonstrating against the police are harmed. The group, which has adopted the Guy Fawkes mask as its symbol and frequently becomes involved in contentious legal matters, said in the video late Sunday Brown's death Saturday is just the latest example of police misconduct having deadly big consequences.[232]

On August 12, a series of doxes were released against Jon Belmar, the St. Louis County Police Chief. There were two reasons for this target. 1) Because he refused to release the name of the officer who shot Mike Brown and 2) Because he challenged Anonymous, calling their threats hollow. A Twitter account affiliated with Anonymous struck back with information regarding Belmar's location, phone number, family members, and their accounts on social media.[233] That same account also released information claiming to be the dox of the officer who shot Brown, but wound up being incorrect.[234]

Operation Hong Kong

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Anonymous posted a video warning on News2Share[235] to the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region on October 1 announcing the engagement of Operation Hong Kong, condemning the government's police's use of force in the ongoing protests.[236] The group stated that it supports the protesters' fight for democracy[237] and promised the government that if the protesters are further harmed or harassed they would attack all web based assets of the Hong Kong Government including but not limited to the taking down of government websites, seizing of government databases, and releasing the personal information on government officials. Anonymous stated that it is time for democracy for the people of Hong Kong and condemns the police for harming the citizens and calls for them to instead protect the citizens.

On October 2, there have been reports that Anonymous have already taken over a few company websites in Hong Kong in accordance to a Hong Kong newspaper Apple Daily.[238]

The Hong Kong Government responded that its servers and web assets are functioning normally, and have arranged to strengthen its cyber defences. The Government further stated that it is prepared against any attempts by Anonymous hackers on its servers and web assets.[239]

Operation Infosurge

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November 8, Anonymous Leyte began hacking Philippine government websites to protest the alleged incompetence government officials exhibited in the aftermath of Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan).[240]

More than 10 government websites were defaced by the said group and 33 more were brought rendered inaccessible, for up to 7 hours[241] and a week before, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) was reportedly hacked[242] with some 2,000 email addresses, usernames, and password hashes released on Pastebin.[243]

The "Operation Infosurge" was done during the Haiyan Anniversary, which was expected to be a day of prayer and thanksgiving, but turned out to be a day of protest from different "online" groups and organizations in Philippines.[244]

2015

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Charlie Hebdo response

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In response to the Charlie Hebdo shooting, the Anonymous released a statement offering condolences to the families affected by it and denounced the attacks as an "inhuman assault" on freedom of expression. They also addressed the terrorists: "[a] message for al-Qaeda, the Islamic State, and other terrorists – we are declaring war against you, the terrorists." As such, Anonymous plans to target Jihadist websites and social media accounts linked to supporting Islamic terrorism with the aim of disrupting them and shutting them down.[245]

Gas station hacks

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On February 11, Anonymous hacked at least 1 gas station automated tank gauge, changing the online name from "DIESEL" to "WE_ARE_LEGION". Theregister.co.uk stated that a hacker with this kind of access could shut down the entire station by "spoofing the reported fuel level, generating false alarms, and locking the monitoring service out of the system".[246]

Operation Death Eaters

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During the week of February 14, Anonymous launched Operation Death Eaters for collating evidence against international pedophile rings and their severe abuse of children to bring them to justice.[247]

Operation Stop Reclamation

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On April 2, 2015. The Pro-Philippine Hackers of Anonymous Philippines attacked and defaced a total of 132 Chinese government, educational and commercial websites in response to China's reclamation work in territorial disputes in the South China Sea, parts of which Manila calls the West Philippine Sea.[248]

Operation Anon Down

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On July 17, 2015, an Anon in a Guy Fawkes mask was shot and killed by a Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officer. As a result, Anonymous websites and YouTube channels vowed revenge, initiating Operation Anon Down. The RCMP website was reported down nationwide on July 19.[249][250]

Operation StormFront

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On July 21, 2015, Anonymous posted a video claiming that due to "Racism, Antisemitism, Islamophobia and Holocaust Denial" they were going to attack the website Stormfront.[251] This website is a white-supremacist website run by former KKK Leader Don Black. The attack was planned for August 1, 2015.[252]

Operation KKK (OPKKK)

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Operation KKK says it has identifying data on as many as 1,000 KKK members and supporters. On Oct. 22, 2015, an Anonymous-associated Twitter account announced that the hacking collective had accessed a Klan-associated Twitter account and promised that they would expose about 1,000 Klan members by name. A later news release promised that the operation would release "names and Web sites, new and old" of "more than 1000″ members of the hate group. According to the Daily Dot, Anonymous later released "a few hundred names, Facebook pages, and Google+ accounts."[253][254]

2016

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Operation Comelec

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Anonymous Philippines hacked the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) website to force them to add security to vote count machines (VCMs). The hacking was followed by a voters' personal information leak,[255] led by LulzSec Pilipinas,[256] who placed them in the website "wehaveyourdata.com". Paul Biteng, a 20-year old information technology (IT) graduate and one of the hackers of the COMELEC, website was soon arrested by National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) agents.[257]

Operation Single Gateway

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After the failure of its single gateway system, the Thai government proposed amendments to the existing Computer Crime Act in May 2016, which they approved on December 16. Anonymous declared cyberwar on Thailand after the passing of these amendments. The amendments allowed the government to censor websites and intercept private communications without a court order or warrant. Anonymous started a Facebook group called "citizens against single gateway" to protest against these acts. Other anonymous members DDoSed several Thailand government websites. One of these F5-powered DDoS attacks hit Thailand's defense website on December 19. It was later revealed that hackers also breached the Thai Police Office website on December 17. The website of the Tourism and Sports was also targeted and attacked on December 23. Several Thai citizens who were part of anonymous ranging from ages 17–20 were arrested.[258]

2017

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Operation Darknet Relaunch

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Visitors to more than 10,000 Tor-based websites were met with an alarming announcement on February 3, 11:50 AM EST: "Hello, Freedom Hosting II, you have been hacked." A group affiliating itself with Anonymous had compromised servers at Freedom Hosting II, a popular service for hosting websites accessible only through Tor.

Anonymous claimed they stole 75 GB worth of files and 2.6 GB of databases and that some of the data stored on the Freedom Hosting II servers contained child pornography.[259][260]

According to Sarah Jamie Lewis, an independent anonymity and privacy researcher who spotted the mass hack as part of her regular scans of the Onion space (Dark Web sites running on the Tor network), Freedom Hosting II was hosting an estimated 20% of all websites on the Dark Web.[261][262]

2018

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Unconfirmed hack of Gabon's official websites

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Anonymous had reportedly attacked at least 70 Gabon's official sites, putting them offline. They said that their actions 'targeted dictatorships', however there was no independent confirmation of the Anonymous claim.[263]

2019

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Chilean Army emails leak

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Anonymous accessed six email accounts of the Chilean Army and revealed 2.34 gigabytes of data related to intelligence, operations, finances and international relations generated and received by those emails from 2015 to 2019. The leaked data encompassed a total of 44 emails, 1,340 documents, 401 images, 53 text files, 10 webpages, nine folders and three videos. Anonymous also published a series of press articles, internal newsletters, travel information, judicial notices and resolutions, purchase quotes, seminars and other files of the institution. As a result, in an official statement, the Chilean Army had activated its cybersecurity protocols to prevent similar acts from happening in the future, while pointing out that the affected accounts were provided by an external company which were being used to interact, share and/or send and receive data with suppliers or institutions with a regular relationship with the Chilean Army.[264]

#OpHongKong

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During the 2019 Hong Kong protests and the siege of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Anonymous announced its hack on four Chinese MongoDB databases, in which they had donated to a data breach notification service vigilante.pw. In a media statement they warned that "all is possible, nothing is secure", and "if Hong Kong is suppressed then China would eye Taiwan as the next target, which can precede a World War 3", while referencing the Terminator movie quote "There’s no fate but what we make for ourselves".[265]

2020

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Pro-Taiwan hacks

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In February Anonymous hacked the United Nations' website and created a page for Taiwan, a country which has not had a seat at the UN since 1971.[266] The hacked page featured the Flag of the Republic of China, the KMT emblem, a Taiwan Independence flag, the Anonymous logo, and embedded YouTube videos such as the National Anthem of the Republic of China and the closing score for the 2019 film Avengers: Endgame titled "It's Been a Long, Long Time", along with a caption. The defacement lasted for at least 14 hours, and the hacked server belonged to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs.[267][268][269]

Anonymous had also hacked the World Health Organization's website and added identical pages seen during the UN hack, alongside numerous "jukebox" pages that contain assorted Anonymous videos such as that of a statement by a Taiwanese member of the decentralised organization saying that China has broken many previous peace treaties in the past including in Tibet, and a scene from 2018 film Maze Runner: The Death Cure. The group has left a cryptic message "UN Have you gotten the Korean memos?" wherein the "Korean memos" is in reference to a peace plan proposed in the book "Stop North Korea!: A Radical New Approach to Solving the North Korea Standoff" written by former Inha University professor Shepherd Iverson. In the book he suggested "buying out North Korea" to achieve re-unification of the Korean peninsula. During an interview with Taiwan News, they stated that the original goals of hacking the United Nation's website was to promote Shepherd Iverson's aforementioned peace plan along with a modified version by hacktivist Cyber Anakin.[270][271]

A few days later the group hacked a Chinese governmental website and inserts a portrait collage featuring the presidents of Republic of China. Aside from putting out a manifesto stating that "we speak for the people", they also taunted that the knowledge of HTML is sufficient enough to re-take mainland China. The deface page also included unrelated references such as an embedded Reddit post regarding the stepping down of former r/HITMAN subreddit moderator "misconfig_exe" due to alleged mod abuse, and the five demands of 2019–20 Hong Kong protests.[272][273]

#PLDTHacked

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On May 28, 2020, the Twitter account of PLDT's customer service was hacked by a Filipino anonymous group as a protest to the terrible internet connection serviced by PLDT. The hackers also changed the profile's name to "PLDT Doesn't Care".[274]

The first tweet by the hackers states: "As the pandemic arises, Filipinos need fast internet to communicate with their loved ones. Do your job. The corrupt fear us, the honest support us, the heroic join us. We are Anonymous. We are Legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget . Expect us."[275]

#BlackLivesMatter Movement

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Anonymous declared a large hacking sequence on May 28, three days after the murder of George Floyd. An individual claiming to be Anonymous stated that "We are Legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget. Expect us." in a now-deleted video. Anonymous addressed police brutality and vowed that they "will be exposing your many crimes to the world". It is suspected that Anonymous are the cause for the downtime and public suspension of the Minneapolis Police Department website and its parent site, the website of the City of Minneapolis. The webpage belonging to a minor United Nations agency was also turned into a memorial for George Floyd.[276][277]

BlueLeaks

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Anonymous claimed responsibility for stealing and leaking a trove of documents collectively nicknamed 'BlueLeaks'. The 269-gigabyte collection was published by a leak-focused activist group known as Distributed Denial of Secrets.[278]

Bolsonaro hack and support of Julian Assange

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In June 4, a group of hackers has released personal information on Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro and his family and cabinet. Justice minister André Mendonça asked the Federal Police to begin an investigation. Then a parliamentary inquiry by the Brazilian Congress investigating the issue of fake news on the internet issued a report showing that the federal government used R$2 million in public money to fund advertising on several websites, some of them responsible for supporting the president. Anonymous took down Atlanta Police Department's website via DDoS, and defaced websites such as a Filipino governmental webpage and that of Brookhaven National Labs. They expressed support for Julian Assange and press freedom, while briefly "taking a swing" against Facebook, Reddit and Wikipedia for having 'engaged in shady practices behind our prying eyes'. In the case of Reddit, they posted a link to a court document describing the possible involvement of a moderator of a large traffic subreddit (r/news) in an online harassment-related case.[279][280]

#UgandanLivesMatter

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On November 20, 2020, the Uganda Police website was hacked as it was down for a number of days. Anonymous came out and claimed the hack in a tweet in response to the violent crackdown on protesters following the arrest of presidential candidate, popstar Bobi Wine. "Uganda: Police (@PoliceUg) have murdered at least 28 people, arrested 577, and injured dozens more with live ammunition, beatings, tear gas, and water cannons.  At a protest challenging President Yoweri Museveni's 34-year reign. UgandaIsBleeding ugandanlivesmatter." read the retweet by Anonymous International account. The first tweet about the hack was done by a claimed member of Anonymous stating that Uganda police force website has been taken offline in response to the violent crackdown on protesters. They should have expected us.. "[281]

2021

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#OpsWakeUp21

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Anonymous announced cyber-attacks on at least five Malaysian websites including that of Johor and Sabah state governments as well as the International Trade and Industry Ministry. As a result, 11 individuals were nabbed as suspects.[282]

Operation Jane and Epik hack

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The Texas Heartbeat Act, a law which bans abortions after six weeks of pregnancy, came into effect in Texas on September 1, 2021. The law relies on private citizens to file civil lawsuits against anyone who performs or induces an abortion, or aids and abets one, once "cardiac activity" in an embryo can be detected via transvaginal ultrasound, which is usually possible beginning at around six weeks of pregnancy.[283] Shortly after the law came into effect, anti-abortion organizations set up websites to collect "whistleblower" reports of suspected violators of the bill.[284]

On September 3, Anonymous announced "Operation Jane", a campaign focused on stymying those who attempted to enforce the law by "exhaust[ing] the investigational resources of bounty hunters, their snitch sites, and online gathering spaces until no one is able to maintain data integrity".[284] On September 11, the group hacked the website of the Republican Party of Texas, replacing it with text about Anonymous, an invitation to join Operation Jane, and a Planned Parenthood donation link.[285]

On September 13, Anonymous released a large quantity of private data belonging to Epik, a domain registrar and web hosting company known for providing services to websites that host far-right, neo-Nazi, and other extremist content.[286] Epik had briefly provided services to an abortion "whistleblower" website run by the anti-abortion Texas Right to Life organization, but the reporting form went offline on September 4 after Epik told the group they had violated their terms of service by collecting private information about third parties.[287] The data included domain purchase and transfer details, account credentials and logins, payment history, employee emails, and unidentified private keys.[288] The hackers claimed they had obtained "a decade's worth of data" which included all customers and all domains ever hosted or registered through the company, and which included poorly encrypted passwords and other sensitive data stored in plaintext.[288][289] Later on September 13, the Distributed Denial of Secrets (DDoSecrets) organization said they were working to curate the allegedly leaked data for public download, and said that it consisted of "180 gigabytes of user, registration, forwarding and other information".[290] Publications including The Daily Dot and The Record by Recorded Future subsequently confirmed the veracity of the hack and the types of data that had been exposed.[291][289]

Concurrently, the group announced that they have hacked the accounts of German conspiracy theorist Attila Hildmann; as a result one of its Twitter accounts @AnonNewsDE has been suspended and in turn caused reactions from politicians such as the MEP of the German Pirate Party, Patrick Breyer who had recommended the microblogging service Mastodon as an alternative. The hacker collective wrote that the blocking does not restrict the group in its work. The suspension caused the hashtag #FreeAnonNewsDe to be trending on Twitter in Germany.[292][293]

Hack of Chinese websites

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Starting from Sept 30, Anonymous hacked a Chinese government tourism promotion website and uploaded several documents and images into its file directory, which was shared to Reddit by a user 'Allez-opi_omi'. The hack lasted for about three days and was divided in three rounds where in the first round, they posted items pertaining to Anonymous emblem, the Taiwanese flag, the Taiwanese anthem, a pro-Taiwan independence banner, photo of the Chinese medical whistleblower Li Wenliang, and memes such as that of mocking Epik CEO Rob Monster, that of calling people to fight the COVID-19 pandemic like Bruce Lee, and that of showing the leader of China's Xi Jinping imposed on the body of an Apple executive introducing the COVID-19, COVID-19 R, COVID-19 Pro, and COVID-19 Pro Max, instead of the latest iPhone 13 models. They also posted a document from Anonymous Malaysia accusing an "Instagram/TikTok influencer" that calls himself "Kuaanzii" of being a "serial rapist" who had allegedly victimized over one hundred women, while naming an individual "Neo Yeaken" as an accomplice and included links to relevant Malaysian local news articles in the document. Finally a cryptic meme that reads "Things are about to get moar snippy!" was posted.[294][295]

In the second round of the hack, they uploaded the Tank Man photo alongside an edited version that shows the text of "When you just started a game and you're trying to figure out how strong your character is.", together with recreations of the picture in various video games. Aside from uploading photos of cartoon character Winnie the Pooh and that of Taiwan's national emblem, they also included a page titled "BONUS - Throwback Thursday: Anonymous 2020 Christmas Gift!" which includes links to hacked pages of the Football Federation of the Russia's Astrakhan region. In turn, they contained images of Russian dissidents, more Taiwan symbols, Milk Tea Alliance memes, and other symbols of defiance against autocratic regimes.[296][297]

In the final round of the hack against the Chinese tourism website, Anonymous posted the images of Presidents of Republic of China, the anti-communist song "Go and Reclaim the Mainland" (反攻大陸去), and memes including that of exhorting Taiwan to redress the 1987 Lieyu Massacre in order to "truly become Numbah Wan", a non-sequitur photo that reads "The soul of Afghanistan shall live long and prosper" which seemingly supports the fallen Islamic Republic of Afghanistan against Taliban, a Ready Player One-related meme that takes a swipe at Chinese Communist Party (CCP) general secretary Xi Jinping's handling of the pandemic where it reads "All homies coming at CCP because of how Pooh mismanaged the COVID", and a wojak meme that poked fun at the Marxist–Leninist subreddit r/GenZedong and the vexed reaction of their members to the hack. Other than these, they also posted a message delivered by former US President John F. Kennedy to the Chinese-American Businessmen's Committee Meeting in Chicago in 1960 that described the communist regime in Beijing as "the totalitarian government which temporarily rules the Chinese mainland" and affirmed U.S. opposition to China's admission to the United Nations. They uploaded a 255-page U.S. patent application published in 2014 for anti-pathogen treatments, which is made by a Massachusetts Institute of Technology's inventor. Finally, Anonymous uploaded a post stating that "We are Anonymous. We are Legion. We do not Forgive. We do not Forget. Expect Us." and closed by announcing, "The Internet Hate Machine hates (and will always hate) fascists and rapists."[298][299]

Next, they have hacked the Chinese Qinghai Province's official website through privilege escalation where they posted contents such as Taiwanese independence flag, a five-page manifesto that starts with a silhouette of Rick Astley and lyrics from his song "Never Gonna Give You Up"; the manifesto included references to the "Taiwan numbah wan" and "West Taiwan" memes, an illustration of Winnie the Pooh, a defense of Li Wenliang, and the slogans "One World, One Dream, Free Tibet," "Free Hong Kong, Revolution of our times," and "Milk Tea Alliance Forever!" It describes Mao Zedong as a "worse monster than Hitler and Stalin combined" and calls for a boycott of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics. They also uploaded the Tibet independence flag, a political compass meme mocking Mike Parson, the governor of Missouri, USA and a red "banhammer" meme, that juxtaposes the red field and five gold stars of the Chinese flag with a golden gavel. The banhammer meme was directed at Reddit as a protest of the shadowbanning of one of the group's accounts.[300]

Hack of Brazilian municipal website

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The Brazilian branch of the hacking group hacked the website of the Brumadinho City Hall and left a video to commemorate the dam disaster that occurred on 25 January 2019 which caused the deaths of 270 people.[301]

Hack of United Nations website during Christmas

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Nearing Christmas, the hacking collective posted pro-Taiwan materials such as Taiwanese national flag, anthem and emblem into the UN Networks on Migration website. They also posted other materials such as the closing score for the 2019 film Avengers: Endgame titled "It's Been a Long, Long Time", reminiscent of the 2020 hack, and the music video of Mandopop song Fragile by Malaysian rapper Namewee and Taiwan-based Australian singer Kimberley Chen. Next, they expressed solidarity to the victims of December 2021 Malaysian floods.

Besides that, they posted HTML codes displaying the Anonymous' previous work, and a peace plan idea in attempt to halt the Russo-Ukrainian War in Ukraine. In the latter, they called for a referendum on whether to presumably follow the existing Minsk Protocol or hand over the separatist-controlled territories to a UN peacekeeping administration. Later, a second referendum in the separatist regions would then ask voters to choose to reunite with Ukraine, gain independence, or join Russia.[302]

2022

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Polar Research Institute of China hack

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The hacking collective defaced a website belonging to the Polar Research Institute of China with pro-Taiwan slogans, Taiwan's national flag and emblem, The Anti-Communist and Anti-Russian Aggression Song, and the music video of Mandopop song Fragile. They also dedicated some of their defacements in attempt to propagate solutions to the 2021–2022 Russo-Ukrainian crisis, including by calling for the creation of a "neutral grouping" of countries "wedged between NATO and Russia" that would include Ukraine, Finland, Belarus, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Moldova. Anonymous argued that the so-called "neutral security belt" could serve as an alliance similar to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) or the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) that acts as a cordon sanitaire between NATO and CSTO countries in order to "assuage Russia's fears without NATO losing its face."

They embedded Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft senior fellow Anatol Lieven's paper "Ending the Threat of War in Ukraine" at the defacement page, while concurring with him on the possibility for a referendum in Ukraine's Donbass region on its ultimate fate, although reminiscent of a preceding hacking operation by the group and differing from the senior fellow's paper, they included the possibility of handing over the territories of Donbass to a United Nations peacekeeper administration in the hypothetical referendum.[303]

Convention of Biological Diversity website hack

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Anonymous hacked into the website for the Clearing-House Mechanism of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CHM), which is a part of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) website. The CBD falls under the UN Environment Programme.

In there, they published materials such as the usual Anonymous logo, a photo of a person wearing a black hoodie and a Guy Fawkes mask, contents that appeared in previous hacks such as the "Taiwan Numbah Wan!" meme, Taiwanese flag and national symbols, proposals to defuse the Russo-Ukrainian crisis, and the music video of Mandopop song Fragile.

Besides that, they included two screenshots of an apparent hack of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) website, and a link to an article calling for an "Operation Warp Speed 2.0" to develop new methods to battle the COVID-19 virus, together with an embedded video that introduces a group of MIT-developed experimental antiviral drugs called DRACO, whose acronym stands for double-stranded RNA activated caspase oligomerizer.[304]

#OpSamanthaSmith

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During the hack of the official website for the Pingxiang County branch of the CCP based in Hebei Province's Xingtai City, Anonymous announced the launch of "Operation Samantha Smith" or #OpSamanthaSmith, a reference to the 1980s child peace activist. The operation was presumably dedicated into resolving the 2021–2022 Russo-Ukrainian crisis.

Besides posting materials such as the Anonymous group symbols, flag of the Republic of China, the picture of tennis star Peng Shuai, and a bonus page titled "Ah Girls Go Army!", the hacking collective threatened in red text to take hostage of industrial control systems if the NATO-Russia tensions in Ukraine continues to worsen. In an apparent warning meant for Russia, Anonymous wrote that the "sole party to be blamed if we escalate on that, will be the same one who started it in the very first place with troop buildups, childish threats, and waves of unreasonable ultimatums."

Anonymous also urged the United Nations to immediately deploy peacekeepers on "at least the Ukrainian side of the frontline in Donbass" under the basis of UN Resolution 337 (V) to "prevent any further provocations" by any side.[305]

In the aftermath of Russia's recognition of the Donetsk People's Republic and the Luhansk People's Republic and in accordance to the hacking collective's threats to take hostage of industrial control systems, they conducted a small hack on a Russian Modbus device which they've announced on a hacked Chinese cultural website, although early on Anonymous kept the location of the hack ambiguous.

According to Anonymous, the Modbus device was said to be a Schneider Electric's Modicon M251 logic controller, and that they were previously "playing nice" so not to give Russia a casus belli but because of the subsequent 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, #OpSamanthaSmith was presumably deemed as a failure and Anonymous would start attacking Russian websites and systems as retaliation.[306]


Operations during the Russian invasion of Ukraine

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Anonymous declared that they had launched 'cyber operations' against the Russian Federation, in retaliation for the invasion of Ukraine ordered by Russian president Vladimir Putin. Websites targeted include the state-controlled RT.[307]

Anonymous is also believed to be responsible for hacking several Russian state TV channels; many users on Twitter and TikTok uploaded videos showing channels playing Ukrainian music and displaying pro-Ukraine images, flags, and symbols.[308] They had hacked Russian television services in order to broadcast footage of the war in Ukraine, and systems believed to be related to Russian space agency Roscosmos where they defaced its website and leaked mission files.[309][310][311]

A yacht allegedly belonging to Vladimir Putin was reportedly hacked by the group where they changed its call sign to “FCKPTN” and setting its target destination to “hell”. They broadcast a troll face picture through a hacked Russian military radio.[312][313]

At least 2,500 Russian and Belarusian targets were reportedly hacked by Anonymous. These included more than three hundred websites of Russian government agencies, state media outlets, banks, as well as websites of leading Belarusian banks such as Belarusbank, Priorbank and Belinvestbank. They also hacked a website belonging to Chechnya's regional government. They also warned that “If things continue as they have been in the past few days, the cyber war will be expanded and our measures will be massively increased. This is the final warning to the entire Russian government. Don’t mess with Anonymous.”[314][315]

In response to the seizure of Ukraine's Zaporizhia Nuclear Power Plant by Russia, Anonymous defaced the website of Rosatom and gained access to gigabytes of data which they intended to leak publicly. They had hacked into printers in Russia to spread anti-propaganda messages.[316][317]

In the aftermath of Bucha massacre, the hacking collective leaked the personal information of 120,000 Russian soldiers in Ukraine.[318]

On Cosmonautics Day, which commemorates cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin's Vostok 1 mission to space, Anonymous broke into five websites, specifically the Russian heavy metal band Aria's site, a Russian hockey site, a Panerai watch enthusiasts site, a basketball team site, and an educational organization site, to put up defacement pages, with pop up messages such as "Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the defenders" and "I find the orcs lack of morality disturbing". They also included videos featuring Darth Vader and the "Star Wars" song "The Imperial March," the online game Roblox, disco song "Kung Fu Fighting", Mandopop music video "Fragile", and a performance of Ukraine's national anthem by cellist Yo-Yo Ma. Besides that, memes showing characters wearing a Guy Fawkes mask and the acronym "A.S.S." which stands for "Anonymous Strategic Support" were shown. Anonymous proposed a list of "post-war settlement solutions" against Russia; examples included financial compensation for the victims of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, the establishment of a United Nations interim administration in occupied territories of Ukraine, a referendum on the status of such territories, creation of a neutral security belt in the region, monetary reparations of at least US$70 billion to Ukraine for reconstruction, the fulfillment of Soviet–Japanese Joint Declaration of 1956 to presumably resolve the Kuril Islands dispute, cession of some Russian Antarctic bases to countries such as Iran, agreement to a potential enlargement of UN Security Council to include Brazil, South Africa and India with the increase of the minimum number of a successful veto to two or more, alongside unusual ones such as the pooling of funds from Russia to develop novel treatments against COVID-19 such as DRACO (double-stranded RNA activated caspase oligomerizer) and long COVID experimental treatment drug BC 007, and to construct a knowledge ark in space, ideally located at least in the middle region of the Asteroid Belt within Solar System. They leaked 446 GB of data from Russian Ministry of Culture.[319]

Anonymous leaked 446 GB of data from the Russian Ministry of Culture[320] and had hacked Russian companies Aerogas, Forest, and Petrovsky Fort. From there they leaked around 437,500 emails which they donated to non-profit whistleblower organization Distributed Denial of Secrets. Following that, the hacking collective hacked and leaked 87,500 emails from an engineering firm Neocom Geoservice, which specialises in exploring oil and gas fields and providing drilling support.[321][322]

In a similar fashion mentioned above, Russian investment company Accent Capital had its computer systems hacked and its 365,000 letters leaked online.[323]

On May 9, 2022, which is the Victory Day in Russia, the video-hosting website RuTube was taken down through cyberattacks, which Anonymous had claimed responsibility later. Network Battalion 65 (NB65), a hacktivist group affiliated with Anonymous, has reportedly hacked Russian payment processor Qiwi. A total of 10.5 terabytes of data including transaction records and customers' credit cards had been exfiltrated. They further infected Qiwi with ransomwares and threatened to release more customer records.[324][325]

Anonymous proceeded to hack Russian firms SOCAR Energoresource and Metprom Group LLC and dump their emails, the latter which was hacked by the Anonymous actors DepaixPorteur, B00daMooda, and Wh1t3Sh4d0w.[326][327] Anonymous hacked into Vyberi Radio and published more than 1,000,000 emails.[328]

DDoSecrets published 1 terabyte of data obtained from Anonymous, which included millions of files including emails, court files, client data, classified data, photographs, videos, payment information, and more from Rustam Kurmaev and Partners (RKPLaw), which was hacked by Anonymous actors DepaixPorteur and B00daMooda.[329][330][331]

Anonymous member "YourAnonSpider" had reportedly hacked into a Russian military UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) company in which plans and tactics regarding the use of drones in warfare had been stolen.[332]

The collective claimed responsibility for hacking Yandex Taxi on early September 2022 which sent dozens of cars to a location resulting in a traffic jam that lasted up to three hours.[333]

Hack of Australian police emails

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The hacking collective leaked 82GB of emails from Australian police in protest of that country's offshore detention of refugees.[334]

During the visit of Speaker of the United States House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan, the website of Taiwan's Office of the President website was affected by a distributed denial of service attack. As a response Anonymous hacked into China Heilongjiang province's Society Scientific Community Federation website and uploaded a HTML page with the words "Taiwan Numbah Wan," Taiwanese flag and emblem, photos of Pelosi and Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, and the words "Taiwan welcomes US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi". A footage showing Taipei 101's display of signs welcoming Pelosi's visit is shown, which reads "Speaker Pelosi", 'Welcome to TW", "Thank you", and "TW hearts US". Finally they embedded a Reddit comment from /r/taiwan subreddit that read "Aged like milk" while showing a picture of a tweet made by New Zealand journalist Andy Boreham predicting that Pelosi would not come to Taiwan because "the US cannot fly a military aircraft into Chinese airspace (yes, incl’ Taiwan) without permission" and that it would be a "suicide mission". Anonymous hacked into a Chinese gasoline generator factory’s website and argued that "True, there is one China, but Taiwan is the real China" and that the regime in Beijing is "only an imitation straight out of wish.com."[335][336]

As a retaliation against the cyberattacks against National Taiwan University, the collective hacked a Chinese real estate website and included links to other deface pages in hacked Russian websites. Besides posting Taiwanese flag and emblem, they argued that the Soviet Vostok 1 crewed space mission was "uncomplete" under the stipulation within Section 8, paragraph 2.15, item b of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI) sporting code that a flight is deemed to be uncompleted if "any member of the crew definitively leaves the spacecraft during flight", as its pilot Yuri Gagarin had ejected from his capsule before it landed. From that, they reportedly said that America's Alan Shepard and John Glenn, who were both inside their capsules when they splashed down, should be considered as first humans in space. Analogies to American-British inventor Hiram Maxim were made. Regarding the technicality, although there are pragmatist arguments which posited that Alan Shepard and John Glenn should be considered as first person to legally complete a spaceflight mission and the first to actually complete an orbit around Earth respectively,[337][338][339] the National Air and Space Museum reported that the FAI reworked its guidelines by emphasizing the launch, orbiting, and safe return of the human over the method in which the landing took place to enable Gagarin to receive the record for the first person in space, along with other claimed records specifically that of duration in orbital flight—108 minutes, greatest altitude in earth orbital flight by a single person spacecraft (which remains standing as of August 2022)—327 kilometres (203 mi),[340] and the greatest mass lifted in earth orbital flight—4,725 kilograms (10,417 lb).[341]

Hack of United Nations Event Proposal Tool website

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On early September 2022, Anonymous hacked the United Nations Event Proposal Tool website to post flags such as that of Taiwan and its pro-independence movement, Kosovo, Belarusian opposition, Russian opposition, Green Ukraine, alongside photo depicting Yuri Gagarin as a clown and six pages of manifesto text which emphasized that Yuri Gagarin had ejected from his capsule before it landed and should not qualify as the first man in space, and called for the establishment of a 30-kilometer demilitarized zone around the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant. The defacement ends with closing comments by Anonymous such as calls for American citizens to "vote wisely" in the 2022 United States Senate elections and 2022 United States House of Representatives elections to avoid going down "Russia's path."[342]

Iranian Protests

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Over the death of Mahsa Amini, Anonymous took out Iranian websites on their word to "help the Iranian people". Besides that they had hacked the databases of Iranian parliament.[343][344]

Revenge hacks over Wikipedia edit war

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In September, an editing war broke out over a Wikipedia article covering Anonymous member Cyber Anakin. Suspecting a Chinese influence operation involving a Wikipedia user who supported the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), Anonymous retalitated by hacking into the systems of China's Ministry of Emergency Management and the commercial Chinese commercial satellite company MinoSpace. They uploaded content including images of the Anonymous emblem, the Taiwanese flag, Queen Elizabeth II, and other images related to contemporary news. They also uploaded a caricature of Xi Jinping and a manifesto which began "Bet you thought you could get away with defiling Wikipedia articles".[345][346][347]

A few days later, Anonymous hacked a United Nations website where it uploaded pro-Taiwanese images and included a manifesto that complained about Wikipedia. They then notified Taiwan News that they had "put Taiwan back into the UN".[348]

In December, Anonymous hacked into an Iranian hajj website and posted images of the Taiwanese flag, the 1964–1979 state flag of Iran, Mahsa Amini, and more criticism of Wikipedia.[349]

2022 COVID-19 protests in China

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During the 2022 COVID-19 protests in China, Anonymous attacked Chinese governmental websites such as an official website in Heilongjiang province and a police surveillance device, while leaking personal information of Chinese law enforcement personnel. The hacking collective laid out five demands, namely the cessation of nucleic acid testing and forced quarantine, freedom of speech with the demolition of the internet firewall, release of arrested protesters and the dismissal of criminal charges against them, resumption of passport processing and opening of national border, and the cancellation of life-term for national leader.[350]

2023

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Hack on a Chinese research balloon

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In the aftermath of the 2023 Chinese balloon incident. Anonymous hacked into the control panels of a Chinese research balloon which has reportedly flied India twice based on flight path, while hacking the websites of the Shanghai-based DP Art & Design Center concurrently. Contents such as criticism against the CCP for its handling of the COVID pandemic and how it "aims to control the world like a James Bond villain through overseas police stations!" and a photo of the Chinese spy balloon that flew over the U.S. appeared on defacement pages, along with a trailer from the Disney/Pixar film "Up," CNN archive footage of Tank Man in 1989, a ChatGPT-generated poem, and criticisms against Wikipedia such as systemic biases against article coverages on women, so-called "spending cancer", deletionism, and point-of-view skewing. They accused Wikipedia for failing to support two Wikipedia Arabic editors, Osama Khalid and Ziyad al-Sofiani, who were imprisoned by Saudi Arabia for "swaying public opinion" and "violating public morals."[351]

While images of Tyre Nichols, Anthony Lowe, and Joe Frasure Jr., all of whom were killed by police were included, Anonymous had criticized the disregard for human and animal lives by the Soviet Union during its pursuit of 'firsts" in the Space Race.[351]

Screenshots posted by the collective indicated previous flight path for the balloon which started near Nanchang in China's Jiangxi Province and flew southwest over Myanmar, Bangladesh, southern India, the Arabian Sea, eastern and central Africa, and the Gulf of Guinea. The flight path then returned back to the northeast over central and eastern Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, the Arabian Sea, Pakistan, India, and Nepal, before arriving in Beijing. They are followed by screenshots showing defacements in the control panel,such as "Please donate your money to Turkish earthquake victims," "Where is Peng Shuai?," "CCP did you flew (fly) your wandering balloons across India?," "RIP Li Wenliang," and "Free East Turkistan." A meme showing an irate Greta Thunberg with the words "How dare Wikipedia" printed above and "Distorts to insult holocaust victims and survivors" was posted as well.[351]

Activities against Russia during the Ukraine war

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In April 2023, to mark the Cosmonautics Day, the collective defaced the website of a Russian law enforcement support foundation where they uploaded a memorial to Tseng Sheng-guang, a Taiwanese soldier who died fighting for Ukraine while hacking into the control systems of machines, reporting including a blast furnace. The defacements begin with the Anonymous logo, a photo of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, a video of the New York Philharmonic playing the Ukrainian national anthem, and a meme promoting the North Atlantic Fellas Organization, an Internet meme movement founded to counter Russian propaganda at the time of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022. These memes were followed by a YouTube video of Ukrainian rap group Kalush Orchestra performing "Stefania" at the Eurovision Song Contest in 2022. Anonymous claimed that it has "always made great strides against Russia since Russia began its immoral war against Ukraine." In addition, they reiterated their claim that Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin cannot be considered as the first man in space because he ejected from his capsule before it landed. They went on to claim that the "firsts" achieved by the Soviet Union during the Space Race were exaggerated and had been surpassed by the achievements of the United States.[352]

On July 2023, Anonymous inserted Taiwanese flag, photo of Tsai Ing-wen along with the flag of fictional "Belgorod People's Republic" on two United Nations websites, specifically that of UN's High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) and the UN Academy websites. There they protested Google's policy of deleting inactive accounts, stating that it is "harsh" and is an action to "destroy history". They uploaded a text file disputing space exploration claims by the Soviet Union and a PDF version of a paper titled "Wikipedia's Intentional Distortion of the History of the Holocaust," by professors Jan Grabowski and Shira Klein. On the UN academy website, a pixilated version of Taiwan's national flag and the lyrics of the Taiwanese national anthem are shown. Anonymous further threatened Russia against using tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine or jeopardizing the safety of the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, remarking that the collective posessed the "ultimate ace card," without revealing what it is other than to say that it is a "trick rather than a treat."[353]

Opposition against Fukushima wastewater release plan

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On August, Anonymous launched cyberattacks against groups that are linked to nuclear power in Japan in order to protest release of treated radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear plant which was crippled during the nuclear disaster which transpired in 2011, into the sea.[354]

Pro-Taiwan operations on UNESCO websites

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On September, Anonymous hacked into the website of UNESCO's Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission to upload five waves of contents, including images to protest an alleged hate crime, proposed solution to the Fukushima wastewater releases, and criticisms against Google's policy to purge inactive accounts. Pictures such as Taiwan flag, police shooting victim Ta'Kiya Young, victims of the Jacksonville mass shooting in August, national seal of the Republic of China, Chiang Kai-shek's successor Yen Chia-kan (嚴家淦), the Shilin Night Market, a cup of bubble tea, Taipei's Ximending, Taitung's Sanxiantai, Kaohsiung's Dragon and Tiger Pagodas, Nantou's Yushan and Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village, logos of 12 of Taiwan's political parties (including the Democratic Progressive Party, New Power Party, Kuomintang, and Taiwan People's Party), and logos of five TV stations in Taiwan including China Television, PTS, Formosa TV. TTV, and CTS. Besides that, documents such "Wikipedia's Intentional Distortion of the History of the Holocaust," a text file listing grievances against Google and Wikipedia, and Mandarin rap song by Tuojiang Yegou (脫韁野狗, Runaway Wild Dog) were displayed there.[355]

Operations during the Israel-Palestinian War

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On October 7, Anonymous targeted numerous Israeli systems such as the Iron Dome missile defense system, the government, Israeli websites, and cameras.[356]

Anonymous issued a statement directed to Benjamin Netanyahu and the Israeli government that the international community was outraged by actions that have "resulted in unimaginable devastation, with thousands of innocent lives lost including over 4000 children, and many more injured and displaced".[357]

In March 2024, Anonymous stated that if Israel did not agree in a couple of days to a ceasefire, they would attack, which they did on March 10 attacking Dimona nuclear plant systems by stealing and publishing more than 7 gigabytes of data.[358]

Hack of United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

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On December, Anonymous hacked a website that is owned by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs where they put contents such as Taiwan's flag, symbols, and pictures of famous leaders. There embedded videos playing Taiwanese national anthem, Namewee's Mandopop song "Fragile," Taiwanese comedian Brian Tseng's "Taiwan," and Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas is You." are shown. A photo symbolizing Operation 1027, the ongoing joint rebel military operation against Myanmar's military junta was displayed as well. While continuing their criticism against Google's policy of deleting inactive accounts where they included a long diatribe against it, the hacking collective also called for calm and peace in the context of the 2023 Guyana–Venezuela crisis. The hacking collective claimed that since the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, it has had the "ultimate ace card" up its sleeve and cryptically says that the ace card is something "likely horrific" that leads to the "dragon's territory." The hacking collective said that it is a "trick rather than a treat" and that its temporary moniker is "Swan Lake." Anonymous reportedly warned that if it goes through with its threatened invasion of the Essequibo Region, it would be forced to launch Swan Lake on Venezuela. Finally Anonymous reiterated its claims that the "firsts" achieved by the Soviet Union during the space race were exaggerated and were far surpassed by U.S. accomplishments while repeating the argument that because Russian Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin had ejected from his capsule before it landed, he does not qualify as the first man in space.[359]

See also

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References

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As of 14:50, 12 April 2022 (UTC), this article is derived in whole or in part from Taiwan News. The copyright holder has licensed the content in a manner that permits reuse under CC BY-SA 3.0 and GFDL. All relevant terms must be followed. The text and its release have been received by the Wikimedia Volunteer Response Team; for more information, see the talk page.

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Further reading

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