In commemoration of the Ferguson protests that began last year on November 24th, Anonymous has announced its intentions to publicly identify 1,000 Ku Klux Klan members on the 24th of November. The 24th of November is the day the Grand Jury in St. Louis came back with a decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson, who many believe wrongfully shot and killed a teenager named Michael Brown earlier in the year. At the time, President Obama told the country, “We need to accept that this decision was the Grand Jury’s to make.”
But Anonymous and perhaps millions of Americans do not agree. They saw the slaying of Michael Brown as one more notch in the belt of a criminal justice system which has systematically murdered young black men for decades with minimal accountability at best. The topic of white privilege and whether or not black Americans are disenfranchised became a subject of national interest.
Anonymous was not universally lauded for its activities during the Ferguson protests. A member of the group willfully doxed the wrong individual in relation to the killing, before the St. Louis police had identified Darren Wilson, and this caused some in-fighting in the group, who had not unilaterally approved the release. The Twitter account of @TheAnonMessage was subsequently deleted, but not before the life-threatening misinformation was spread.
Taking on the Ku Klux Klan
— :deactivated (@KuKluxKlanUSA) November 18, 2014
At the same time, Anonymous made a lot of friends when it took on the Ku Klux Klan. The 100+-year-old group, which can only be described as a white nationalist terrorist organization, publicly
warned protesters that it would use “lethal force” on them. Anonymous did not stand by, but rather hacked several KKK accounts and mocked the “proud to be white” people mercilessly. The main KKK account, @KuKluxKlanUSA, has been controlled by Anonymous for nearly a year now, with Twitter doing nothing in response.
For some, perhaps, it might be interesting that the KKK was allowed to have an “official” Twitter account in the first place. Or that Anonymous are, for that matter. In an era when people are offended by smaller and smaller things, social media companies have responded by increasing their censorship policies and limiting the freedom of expression of participants in new ways.
Anonymous has long said, “we do not forgive, we do not forget.” In the case of the KKK, who’d previously been left alone by the group, for the most part, the group remembers quite well what the KKK said to protesters last year. In a statement released last week, the group made plain its intentions to dox (an act of revealing another personal’s personal information on the internet) as many as 1,000 KKK members, an ultimate irony when you consider that the KKK has long cherished the anonymity of its hoods.
We are not attacking you because of what you believe in as we fight for freedom of speech, we are attacking you because of what you do to our brothers and sisters. […] We’ve gained access to yet another one of your KKK Twitter account. Using the info obtained, we will be revealing about 1000 of your klan member identities. The aim of our operation is nothing more than Cyber Warfare. Anything you upload will be taken down, anything you use to promote the KKK will be shut down.
The KKK has yet to make much of a public response regarding the coming doxing. Perhaps those who know they’re on the list are making preparations for the backlash that might come as a result.
After all, any company employing such individuals will see it as prudent to fire them and save face. Any church to which they belong could see fit to ostracize them. The KKK has not been a popular group for many decades, even in the deep south where this writer lives.
The Anonymous statement closes with a simplistic yet resonating rationale: “You messed with our family, and now we will mess with yours…”
Images from Shutterstock.
Anonymous Inspired Comic ‘Hacktivist’ is Being Adapted for TV
Hacktivist, a graphic novel inspired by global hacking activist collective Anonymous and created by actress Alyssa Milano will be adapted for the small screen at a time when another Anonymous-inspired TV show Mr.Robot, is garnering rave reviews.
Alyssa Milano, an actress who has appeared in feature films and network TV shows is known for taking definitive stances politically, will see her 2014 graphic novel ‘Hacktivist’ adapted as a television series.
According to Deadline, The CW network will be developing an adaptation of the graphic novel Hacktivist, created by Alyssa Milano. The concept for the cyber-thriller graphic novel was pitched by Milano to comic publisher Boom! Studios, only coming after Marvel and DC in controlling the largest library of comic book IPs.
Hacktivist features two lead characters who run a successful social media company. The fictional characters are also hackers by night, inspired by popular hacktivist group Anonymous. Also, the protagonist in the comic was modeled after Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, while the fictional company based on the real-life social media giant.
Speaking to the Daily Dot in an earlier interview, Milano revealed how the idea came about.
I became obsessed with the role of the media, and how it was being used as a tool for protest.
At the same time, Anonymous was using hacking skills to empower people. And I thought, ‘What if Anonymous wasn’t a group but one person?’ And that spiraled into, ‘What if Anonymous was one guy? What characteristics would he have?’ He’d have to be socially aware, a coder, have access, be compassionate.”
Hacking activists in various parts of the world tend to unify under the banner of ‘Anonymous’, a faceless, leaderless, decentralized group of anyone and everyone who takes up its name.
Some of Anonymous’ most prominent movements occurred on November 5, 2013. Millions of demonstrators in over 400 cities around the world jointly participated in the Million Mask March on the day that that remembered the Guy Fawkes Night. The Guy Fawkes mask is commonly seen as the symbol of Anonymous, with members of the group readily distinguishable in public by wearing the masks.
Anonymous has undeniably made its mark in the mainstream consciousness. Wildly popular and critically-acclaimed TV shows like Mr. Robot see its fundamental premise in hacker activism and the new TV adaption of ‘Hacktivist’ – directly influenced by Anonymous – will only further perpetuate the loosely-associated international hacktivist network.
Images from Amazon, Flickr and Shutterstock.
Anonymous Hacker Protesting Prosecution Begins Second Week of Hunger Strike
In 2014, Anonymous hacker Martin Gottesfeld was allegedly involved in the hacking of Boston Children’s Hospital following the suspected mistreatment of one of its patients. Now, the alleged hacker has begun his second week of a hunger strike in prison to protest the assumed prosecution of the late Internet activist Aaron Swartz and the controversial child-custody case involving Justina Pelletier, reports Newsweek.
Two and a half years ago, the hacker collective Anonymous released a video calling for attacks against the hospital. It was alleged that 15-year-old Justina Pelletier was being held against her will by the State of Massachusetts where she was ‘tortured physically and mentally.’
In a letter, Gottesfeld wrote that what happened to Justina Pelletier goes far beyond a medical or custody dispute, and beyond child abuse.
Tragically, tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of children have suffered horrific abuse at fraudulent places who have no legitimate right to call themselves ‘residential treatment programs.’
Two Demands Need to be Met
In order for his hunger strike to come to an end, Gottesfeld is asking for two demands to be met.
He wants the U.S. presidential candidates to make a promise ensuring that children are no longer mistreated, tortured, abused or killed, and he wants to end the style of prosecution that U.S. attorney for Massachusetts, Carmen Ortiz waged against Aaron Swartz, Reddit co-founder. Swartz is reported to have committed suicide after he was accused of alleged computer crimes.
Speaking to Newsweek, Dana Gottesfeld, wife of Martin Gottesfeld said that he believes his conditions will be met.
If the candidates make the pledge but don’t make good on it, he plans to strike again.
He faces up to five years in prison and a $380,000 fine.
For now, it remains to be seen if the presidential candidates will consider his demands. Given Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s previous thoughts on what he thinks should be done to Edward Snowden if he became president, you have to wonder what kind of reception Martin Gottesfeld will receive from him.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
Anonymous India: Mobile Network Reliance Jio is Sharing Call Data with Advertisers
The hacking group Anonymous is accusing the telecom network, Reliance Jio, of sharing its call data with advertisers in the U.S. and Singapore.
In a recent blog post, Anonymous India exposes how Reliance Jio has been sharing customers’ call data with foreign companies. Anonymous India also provide steps to see how Reliance Jio are sharing the data.
A year ago we had posted about how Reliance Jio was sharing user location data with China. One year on and nothing has changed.
In the blog post, Anonymous India claims that data from Reliance Jio’s My Jio and Jio Dialer apps are being sent to an advertiser called Mad.Me. It further adds that Reliance Jio is utilizing a third-party software development kit and is failing to verify what data is being sent and collected through it.
Reliance Jio Accused a Second Time
This, however, isn’t the first time that Anonymous India has accused Reliance Jio.
Last year the hacker activist group highlighted in another blog post that Reliance Jio had security flaws in its RJio chat app.
According to the 2015 post, data was being sent to a Chinese IP without encrypting it beforehand. This meant that while data was being leaked to the Chinese, anyone who wanted to could easily look into a conversation and know what was being shared or discussed, making it vulnerable to hackers.
Anonymous Never Forgets
When it comes to bringing the wrongs of others to light, the hacker activist group, Anonymous, are not afraid of standing up to the challenge.
At the beginning of the year, Anonymous targeted Thai police after protesting the conviction of two Burmese men who faced a death sentence in connection to two murdered British backpackers.
In May, Hacked reported that Anonymous had played a significant role in the target of financial institutions such as Greece’s central bank, which was targeted in a DDoS attack. According to the report, Anonymous consider central banks around the world as a ‘global banking cartel.’
In a bid to target those that it believes should be targeted, bringing greater awareness to the public, it seems that the hacktivist collective Anonymous won’t be stopping anytime soon.
Featured image from Shutterstock.
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