The hacker group Anonymous has announced a cyber war aimed at Russia in response to its attack on Ukraine. But who is Anonymous, and what are their interests in siding with Ukraine?
Note to you guys in advance that this article is based on the subjective point of view of the writer and does not condemn or support anyone. These are basic analysis only and do not represent any political views.
Now that you can easily recognize the white mask with a wide smile, Anons (Anonymous) is a decentralized international collective (not an organization) of technology activists and hackers. . As they stated, Anonymous is not owned by anyone and everyone is one, anyone can use the name of this alliance in hacks.
Their targets are governments, public institutions, tech giants, and big businesses. Perhaps best known for their politically and socially motivated cyberattacks, they are seen by many as “digital superheroes” who serve their own justice – especially especially when law enforcement can’t do that.
“In the new video that Vibes made, Anonymous represents justice beyond the law, superheroes do things that the law cannot do – an idea that seems appealing,” wrote Dale Beran for The Atlantic.
The group is said to have originated in 2003 on 4chan, they named “Anonymous” for all users who don’t want username. Primarily teenagers, users will gather together in virtual chats to discuss modern politics.
Small-scale hacks start with pranks and infiltrate online portals and chat rooms. But by 2008, the group began to set more serious goals, such as Church of Scientology. At the same time, their signature Guy Fawkes masks, used as inspiration by David Lloyd in V for Vendetta, became symbols of Anonymous and their rebellion against abusers of power.
Coalition Against Oppression
Over time, many people have been arrested for affiliation with Anonymous in the US, UK, India, Spain, Netherlands, Turkey and other countries. This group has attracted the attention of the FBI and various governments after a series of famous cyber attacks.
In 2010, Anonymous targeted PayPal, Visa, Amazon, and Mastercard to cut off WikiLeaks donations.
Then in 2011 they successfully carried out DDoS attacks on 8 Tunisian government websites during the Tunisian revolution. Continuing to support the Arab Spring, they leaked the passwords of the email and email addresses of hundreds of Middle Eastern government officials and targeted Egyptian government websites during the revolution. Egypt.
Various attacks followed: from hacking the website of the Syrian Ministry of Defense and placing a pro-democracy flag on it to joining the Nigerian People’s Liberation Front and the Naija Cyber Attack Force.
Although not all actions of this union always have positive results (for example, in 2014 they found the wrongdoing in the police shooting death of Michael Brown during a 2014 Missouri protest. ), but they are still called the fighters for justice.
Fight for Ukraine
On February 24, the hacktivist collective announced that they are officially joining the cyberwarfare against the Russian government following the invasion of Ukraine.
— Anonymous (@YourAnonOne) February 24, 2022
Since then, they have leaked the databases of the Russian Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Economic Developmenttook down many state-owned websites, including Government.ru, hacked Russian state TV channels, and intercepted Russian military communications.
Someone hacked into Russian state TV channels. They feature Ukrainian music and national symbols. 🇺🇦
— BECZKA ️ (@beczka_tv) February 26, 2022
“Anonymous has ongoing operations to keep .ru (Russia) government websites offline, and to expose information to the Russian people so they can escape Putin’s state censorship. We also have activities in place to keep Ukrainians online as good as possible,” Anonymous shared in a tweet.
While most Russian organizations have remained silent about the nature of these attacks, Russia Today (RT) — the state television channel Anonymous calls “Russian propaganda” — attributed the attacks to DDoS attack on their website is due to this group.
“Following Anonymous’s statement, RT websites became the subject of massive DDoS attacks from around 100 million devices, mainly based in the United States. An RT spokesperson told Motherboard in an email.
On the other hand, Roscosmos has denied claims that a series of disruptive attacks by Anonymous resulted in Russian officials losing control of their “spy satellites”. Initially, the NB65 hacker group claimed to have shut down the Control Center of the Russian Space Agency. The general manager of Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, denied this information, he also stated that the Russian space industry was effectively protected from cyber attacks.
The information of these scammers and petty swindlers is not true. All our space activity control centers are operating normally. https://t.co/MY0qzlLqCI
— (@Rogozin) March 2, 2022
Due to the ongoing conflict and many Russian entities unwilling to disclose cyberattacks, verifying their source and accuracy can be very complex. However, many experts believe that this is really consistent with the previous actions and capabilities of Anonymous.
But what’s next? As other hackers also join Russia’s forces – such as the Conti ransomware group siding with Putin – it seems likely that we will find ourselves not only in a state-led cyberwar but also in a state-led cyberwar. a conflict that reflects one’s personal interests and values. Cyberwarfare differs from traditional warfare in that independent hacktivist groups often have many – if not many – skills and resources to cause real trouble.
In today’s world, cyberattacks are no longer some isolated technical incident that doesn’t affect the physical – they’re part of a real war going on in real life.
“We have long hypothesized that cyberattacks will be part of the power of any country, and I think what we are witnessing for the first time most frankly. in human history is that cyberattacks have become the first shot of war,” Hitesh Sheth, CEO of Vectra AI, told CNBC.
As mentioned at the beginning of the article, this is just information online, not condemning or supporting anyone. Your thoughts are not anyone’s opinion.