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The Virtual Wars: Hacktivism

The Virtual Wars: How HACKTIVISM Finally Became a Powerful Virtual Weapon Hacktivism is defined as "the nonviolent use of legal and/or illegal digital tools in pursuit of political ends" From Anonymous' takedown of the F.B.I. website to the Syrian government's hack of its online opposition, hacktivists have made serious headlines this year. Once reserved for the cyber-savvy fringe, hacktivism has finally proven itself a devastating weapon of the digital age. Consider how rising hack-attacks are shifting power between citizens, governments, corporations and the technology they've all come to trust: Hacking by the GOVERNMENT In the recent struggles in Syria, the government has employed hacking to keep tabs on the opposition. SYRIA Government hacktivists impersonate opposition members on social media sites, interact with other potential opposition members, and get them to download a Trojan virus a program disguised as one thing that actually serves a different purpose; oftentimes creating a back door for enabling unseen remote access to the infected computer system Trojans used by the Syrian government have been able to: Hack social media and email accounts Take screenshots View contents of folders Log keystrokes Send all this information to a hidden IP address Hacking by UNDERGROUND GROUPS One of the most famous hacker groups to enter the realm of using hacking as political expression has been the group Anonymous. ANONYMOUS 2010 December 2010 Mastercard and Visa are attacked by Anonymous in response to the companies shutting down payments to WikiLeaks January 2011 Anonymous attacked Tunisian government websites in response to censorship; also July 2011 attacked Egyptian government Anonymous breached the database websites in support of the of Biotech giant Monsanto, opposition movement pledging to exact vengeance for their crimes against humanity (Monsanto produces genetically engineered seeds and pesticides, October 2011 and supplied the US Government with Agent Orange during the Anonymous launched "Operation Vietnam War) DarkNet," taking down over 40 child pornography sites, publishing the names of over 1500 individuals involved with it January 20, 2012 Department of Justice and the FBI 2012 sites are taken down temporarily by Anonymous, responding to the shutdown of file sharing service Megaupload in the midst of SOPA piracy legislation First ever act of HACKTIVISM W.A.N.K. In October 1989, in protest of nuclear armament, the WANK worm changed the login screen of many computers connected to DOE, HEPNET, and NASA to read: WORM S A G A I NST NU CLE AR K I L LERS WANIK Your System Has Been Officially WANKed You talk of times of peace for all, and then prepare for war. Different Types of HACKING White Hat Hackers Someone who breaks security for at best altruistic and at the very least, non-malicious reasons Grey Hat Hackers Hacktivists Someone with hacking skills can fall under any of the above and an ambiguous code of categories, but hack in pursuit of ethics who is neither altruistic political ends or as protest or entirely above board Black Hat Hackers Hacker who breaks security simply to show off their skills or to engage in criminal activity HACKING Statistics Number of complaints per year by the Internet Crime Complaint Center 275K 231K 207K 207K 206K 124K 75K 50K 16K 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 The top 5 countries hackers reside in: 10,57. 66.17. The United Kingdom The United States 7.5% Nigeria 3.17. 1.6% Canada China Statistics show that hacking is on the rise. From simple credit card fraud to massive political protest, hack-attacks continue to evolve as a powerful tool used to serve diverse causes worldwide. To avoid getting caught in the crossfire of the virtual wars, stay alert online and report phishing scams and sites that compromise personal information. END Brought to you by FRUGAL DAD Sources

The Virtual Wars: Hacktivism

shared by kthorspear on Mar 27
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Frugal Dad breaks down the history of hacktivism, as well as its diverse uses from governmental probing to vigilante justice.


Frugal Dad


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