Update: Anonymous Hacks Everything For Guy Fawkes Day

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Update: Anonymous Hacks Everything For Guy Fawkes Day

The hacker collective celebrates Guy Fawkes day by defacing a crapload of websites.

Ah, Anonymous. Just when we thought the rash of "hacktivism" associated with Occupy Wall Street and WikiLeaks was over, you take the opportunity to smash our faces with the pie of broken websites. Today, November 5th, is Guy Fawkes Day. It commemorates the spoiling of a Catholics plot to blow up the House of Lords and depose the Protestant King James I. The hacker group known as Anonymous has taken the Guy Fawkes mask as their symbol, possibly because they are Catholics, but more likely due to the graphic novel and subsequent movie adaption of V for Vendetta about a British anarchist fighting for freedom. That's where the following rhyme is often repeated: "Remember, remember; The fifth of November; The gunpowder treason and plot. I know of no reason; Why the gunpowder treason; Should ever be forgot."

How did the hackers celebrate November 5th this year? Well, by claiming to attack numerous websites for major companies and organizations including but not limited to PayPal, antivirus software-maker Symantec, ImageShack, NBC, the Argentina Government Bank, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), and the official website for an Australian government program for disabled people. Many of the websites supposedly affected have been returned to their owners' control, but Anonymous claims to have stolen some documents and even personal information such as PayPal passwords.

Not content to let their anarchist acts speak for themselves, the hackers took to Twitter and other social media to proclaim their commemorative actions. The torrent began around 9pm ET last night with the following statement from the official Anonymous "press arm": "Preparing #OpVendetta Remember, remember 5th of November." There follows a stream of announcements, boasts and taunts as PayPal and the other sites are defaced.

"The Twitterverse goes mad wondering what #Anonymous will do next on this 5th day of November since we already started out with a bang!" read a Tweet from Anonymous Press at 10:30pm ET last night.

Most of the attacks were merely defacing websites with Anonymous messaging in protest of supposed anti-freedom initiatives by governments, but the attack on PayPal is potentially more serious. Anonymous claims its hackers stole information from 27,935 and posted still-encrypted passwords for all to see. PayPal responded by saying, "We're investigating this but to date we have been unable to find any evidence that validates this claim." Still, if PayPal was indeed hacked then the allegations against Anonymous escalate from vandalism and criminal mischief to allowing the actual theft of real assets.

The Anonymous attacks don't just involve financial institutions and governments; NBC.com was hacked in addition to websites for properties such as the Jimmy Fallon show, Saturday Night Live and even Lady Gaga. Really? Gaga? She's not subversive enough for you, Anonymous?

There will likely be more reports of hackings over the course of the day no doubt ensuring we will indeed remember, remember the 5th of November.

Update: According to a PayPal spokesperson, it turns out that PayPal itself was not hacked. They stated that, "It appears that the exploit was not directed at PayPal after all, it was directed at a company called ZPanel. The original story that started this and was retweeted by some of the Anonymous Twitter handles has now been updated."

Source: ZD Net and Cnet

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So they took a British holiday and took targets that are American...Yeah. If you're going to do anything on this day, at least try and keep the tradition and attack political targets.

we all live in America

Umm.... Yay? Fight for the people... I guess?

I feel so empowered now.... I think?

Hehehe Their plan is going to bomb harder than Parliament!

Good job Anon, you clearly have no idea what you're doing.

mad825:
So they took a British holiday and took targets that are American...Yeah. If you're going to do anything on this day, at least try and keep the tradition and attack political targets.

we all live in America

They only know about the holiday because it was mentioned in V for Vendetta. I bet they don't even know THAT took place in the UK.

DVS BSTrD:
Hehehe Their plan is going to bomb harder than Parliament!

Too soon!

Take that, the Man! We don't need your Australian disabled people keeping us down.

I bet Paypal users must feel so free right now.

Seriously, how does posting PayPal passwords promote freedom? What is their goal here?

Why can't they just celebrate by getting drunk and burning straw men like the rest of us?

Though Anonymous is so last decade. It used to be slightly cool, but not now. I hope the Escapist doesn't get hacked again.

Guys! Guys!

Let's wear the face of a terrorist who wanted to install an even more oppressive Catholic regime!

While we're at, let's put Nazi swastikas on our arms to represent ethnic diversity!

...what is this supposed to accomplish? Are they trying to avenge Guy Fawkes by taking businesses down and replacing them with Catholic businesses? What is the goal? Seems like it is simply ' don't like this company of lets screw them over somehow'

I think this highlights the waste of an angry mob when it is unled.

Im kinda waiting for Anon to do something truly meaningful.

I celebrate Guy Fawkes Day the way he wanted it celebrated...by killing Protestants.

The quote "You either die a hero or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain" comes to mind.
Anonymous reminds me of the same punks who think anarchy is all about destruction. Yet another group of people who fight for a cause without direction or purpose.

OniaPL:
Umm.... Yay? Fight for the people... I guess?

I feel so empowered now.... I think?

Yeah I feel really empowered by the potential theft of paypal account information, Nice one anonymous, I now dislike you very much.

Daystar Clarion:
Guys! Guys!

Let's wear the face of a terrorist who wanted to install an even more oppressive Catholic regime!

While we're at, let's put Nazi swastikas on our arms to represent ethnic diversity!

That's not a half bad idea there Mr Clarion, we could use it to dilute their symbols into nothing more than a silly pop culture meme!

I thought Anon was for helping people...? ._.
Lately it just seems that they are just being stupid.

Greg Tito:
and the official website for an Australian government program for disabled people.

Fighting the good fight I see...

McMullen:
Take that, the Man! We don't need your Australian disabled people keeping us down.

I bet Paypal users must feel so free right now.

Seriously, how does posting PayPal passwords promote freedom? What is their goal here?

I know. I just change my password and remove some of my information from Paypal because of this.

Thanks for making me feel "empowered", Anon.

As the fine people on /b/ would say:

Faggots.

laurenhiya21:
I thought Anon was for helping people...? ._.
Lately it just seems that they are just being stupid.

Lately?
They have been acting like pricks with some power from day one.

Hurray, no one loves freedom more than the Catholic regime of the 1600's. They were awesome.

And while we're at it, Fuck Antivirus software makers, they oppress our freedom to download spyware. And Fuck the disabled of Australia, stealing our car parking spaces like they ruddy own the place, who do they think they are? And Fuck Saturday Night Live for. . . erm, I don't know why but fuck 'em. And fuck Lady GaGa for her freedom of expression and promotion of gay rights, it goes against our ancient catholic ways.

Seriously Anon, are you complete morons?

Besides the hypocrisy (or, lets be honest, ignorance) of wearing a Guy Fawkes mask to fight freedom, they're nothing but a few hackers with waaay too much free time, and not enough responsibility.

I vote for Spider-man masks as an alternative for Anon, you know, so they can completely fuck up everything he stood for as well.

Guy Fawkes wanted pretty much a dictator instead of freedom, and you're acting like even bigger idiots.

Oooookay, time to change the ol' PayPal password.

So, it appears people are not happy with this. Hooray!

I wouldn't mind if they went after their old targets of oppressive banks or people trying to regulate the internet (which is what they are supposed to be protecting) but this is just vandalism. Not worthy of the Anon name.

Shit they hacked paypal. Why must I be in work where I can't change my password?

Well doesn't that just cheer up your day.

I would seriously like to know their reasoning behind this. I doubt they have one, but I would like to hear it nonetheless. Government program for disabled people? Yes, stay classy. And did they target Lady Gaga out of jealousy because they realized how cool and suitable name Gaga would be for Anon?

I suppose it was well past time to change my Paypal password and remove my card details. So... thanks?

and in an instant they turned from what alot of people would call heroes into thieving little bottom dwellers.

publishing peoples paypal password for others to steal from them. targetting disabled people. WAY TO FIGHT THE MAN!

I could make witty jokes about what a hypocritical failure this is, but honestly why bother.

This was just pathetic, unimpressive, underwhelming and pointless, yet they still try to big themselves up as a force of power and authority.

Guy Fawkes made history even though he failed because his conviction to his ideals led him to try and achieve something that shocked and frightened a nation.
Anonymous succeeded in their goals, and yet no one will remember this day because it absolutely fails to make any impact on anyone's life. It's a pitiful excuse for a day of anarchy, by people who probably don't know what anarchy means.

Thunderous Cacophony:
So, it appears people are not happy with this. Hooray!

I wouldn't mind if they went after their old targets of oppressive banks or people trying to regulate the internet (which is what they are supposed to be protecting) but this is just vandalism. Not worthy of the Anon name.

Anonymous is not, and never has been, a group of "Hacktivists" despite that being projected onto them. Anonymous has always presented itself as a force of unpredictable chaos. Before all of the so called "hacktivism" you should take a serious look at what they did, a lot of which was NOT nice and justified by the famous "for the lulz" explanation.

While Anonymous has thrown down for internet freedom related causes, which I always suspected because crackdowns could very well affect their own brand of chaos, it's done far more than that.

To be honest the eclectic collection of targets aimed at here is what you should expect from Anonymous, don't let the exceptions, as famous and popular as they might be, interfere with your understanding of the entity your dealing with.

-

That said, in response to the article itself, my immediate guess is that like many large scale offensives this was conducted by differant individuals (and groups) who all picked their own targets without any real theme, other than the specific date. It was probably done to show Anonymous is out there and still pretty strong despite crackdowns. Their shotgun blast of random targets kind of shows that nothing from goverment sites, to those of private figures, and pop culture gurus are safe, nor are they aiming entirely at wrong doers.

I suppose some of the odder choices do make a degree of sense, some even from a hacktivism standpoint. Assaulting an Austrlian disabillity bureau is something you'd have to look at the policies of to see if it was random/chaos or a message based hack by those conducted it. Despite the popular, left-wing, perception, helping disabled people isn't all that these groups get up to, it rapidly becomes about power. Such organizations have been used as a blunt object to call people on "code violations" and the like, some politician doesn't like you and he can insist your back door has a handicap ramp costing thousands of dollars despite all common sense, it can be used to shut dowm an condemn buildings, and similar things that have nothing to do with legitimate uses of the granted power and how it was intended. Among other things. I can't say much about that organization. "Lady Gaga" likewise is pretty much pop culture, she creates the illusion of being subversive, doing so in a more or less socially accepted way, that might get attention but not so much that it represnets more than a trivial annoyance. It's hard for me to put into words, but I can see how true subversives might dislike her. ICP (Insane Clown Posse) was more over the top than she is, especially during their height, and actually seemed to be one of the favorite targets of Anonymous and other similar groups with or without ties to it like Encyclpedia Dramtica or Something Awful.

laurenhiya21:
I thought Anon was for helping people...? ._.
Lately it just seems that they are just being stupid.

anon is such a loose collection of people, anyone can claim to be anon period. Since anon has any number of heads, some of which had left the group over the new direction, its "behavior" at any given moment can be anything from digging out some vast government conspiracy about flouride they dug out of the nsa databases, to stealing 50 million credit cards from everyones favorite online retailer, for little more than the lulz.

but anyone can pull anything and claim to be anon and there is noone to say otherwise. I expect we may see any number of harder crimes where anon is just a flag to throw people off.

some of the people at anon are ok and i think do some good things, its just with any loose collective of people the bad eggs outweigh the good eggs and many just do not have the ideas that some of the core guys had.

i did did a great lol out of norton's site getting hacked just cause i really dislike symantec.

Ironically Guy Fawkes wasn't trying to rid England of a protestant tyranny, but install a Catholic one.

10 bucks they didn't actually hack paypal. they've made false claims of big targets before, and they apparently want to keep doing it.

umm...why? no wait I'll just say ...okay?

maybe they should target EA and Activision lol...

Daystar Clarion:
Guys! Guys!

Let's wear the face of a terrorist who wanted to install an even more oppressive Catholic regime!

While we're at, let's put Nazi swastikas on our arms to represent ethnic diversity!

given the context it's entirely appropriate and sends the message they wanted to deliver

weirdguy:

Daystar Clarion:
Guys! Guys!

Let's wear the face of a terrorist who wanted to install an even more oppressive Catholic regime!

While we're at, let's put Nazi swastikas on our arms to represent ethnic diversity!

given the context it's entirely appropriate and sends the message they wanted to deliver

That they have no clue about historical figures and base their entire 'movement' around the misuse of one?

I agree.

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