Online hacktivist group Anonymous hacked into the Swedish Government yesterday, posting email addresses and passwords to the internet.
The attack was first announced on one of Anonymous’s twitter feeds, @anonymousglobo.
The attack came as a response to the Swedish Governments seizure of the torrenting website The Pirate Bay, and affected not only email addresses from the Swedish government, but certain email addresses from Argentina, Brazil, India, Israel and Mexico as well. The pastebin post did not speak much to the issue, but did contain a strange message as a final line; “Warning: Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year to all!! Bye :*”
Around midnight last Tuesday, the Swedish police raided Pirate Bay servers, bringing the torrent website down. The website has been unable to relaunch since then, despite claims that the takedown would not be a killing blow to the website. This raid generated a fair amount of ire from those parts of the internet that believe torrenting is an issue of freedom of expression. A retaliation should have been expected. Nor is today’s post by Anonymous the first attack in retaliation of the Pirate Bay’s takedown: about three days ago Lizard Squad, a hacker group famed for attacking game servers, launched several DDOS attacks against EA and accidentally hit internet giant Telia, grinding their services down to a halt.
As of this writing, neither the Swedish nor the other national governments involved have acknowledged or commented on the hack. It may be that they are waiting for another shoe to drop, the Swedish government is already acquainted with Anonymous attacks, and they may be waiting to see if DDOS attacks follow, as occurred in a 2012 attack that was as well sparked by a slight against the Pirate Bay. One cannot help but feel that these attacks pale in comparison with last week’s hack of Sony pictures by the hacker group Guardians of Peace. This attack seems comparatively minor, and one cannot help but wonder whether (or how) Anonymous will later continue this operation. It will be interesting to see how (or if) this story continues to unfold.
Are these attacks in anyway justified? Will we see more from Anonymous regarding this issue?