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Australia Censorship Security Your Rights Online

Hackers Attack AU Websites To Protest Censorship 334

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the and-it-has-a-funny-name-too dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A band of cyber-attackers has taken down the Australian Parliament House website and hacked Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's website in coordinated protests against government plans to filter the Internet. The group responsible, called Anonymous, is known for coordinated Internet attacks against Scientology and other groups in the past. It recently turned its attention against the AU government after it said in December that it would block access to sites featuring material such as rape, drug use, bestiality and child sex abuse."
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Hackers Attack AU Websites To Protest Censorship

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  • by darkvizier (703808) on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @11:52AM (#31086428)
    I'm sure parliament is trembling in their shoes about now. They cannot hope to stand against anonymous. Who can possibly save them? Maybe... batman...
    • by Asic Eng (193332) on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @12:00PM (#31086558)
      Not sure if it's a good idea to protest censorship by limiting others' speech. Apart from that I think it will more likely create the impression of the "scary evil hackers who need to be controlled by law". I'd like to feel happy about this event since I agree with the anti-censorship sentiment, but I'm afraid it will actually do more harm than good.
      • Not sure if it's a good idea to protest censorship by limiting others' speech.

        We don't have to tolerate the intolerant.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Asic Eng (193332)
          Hmm - no I don't think I agree. Free speech is useless unless it applies to everyone, no matter how much we may agree with their ideas.
      • The point is to remind the powers that be that they rule only because they are *allowed* to rule. The message sent by Anonymous is a simple message:

        Remember your place while you still have one.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          "Civil disobedience" isn't a catch-all for 'I'm breaking the law and I think I'm doing it for a good cause'. It means you are publicly breaking an unjust law and expect to be arrested for it. Blacks sitting at a white lunch counter in the face of Jim Crow laws was civil disobedience. Ghandi defying the British Army and making his own salt was civil disobedience.

          A bunch of chantards doing DDOS attacks is not.

    • by Ukab the Great (87152) on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @12:14PM (#31086740)

      Batman's a shady character with a troubled past, lots of toys, and teenage boy partner who he dresses in tights. The cry for help would never make it past the filter.

      • by VShael (62735)

        "By that rational, every billionaire with a funfair in his background would be a suspect!
        And that's not the kind of world I want to live in!" -- Michael Jackson.

        • > that's not the kind of world I want to live in

          He's dead, so his problem seems to be solved.

          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by Amorymeltzer (1213818)

            Yes indeed, very true. Just like how Dr. King's assassination solved racial inequities and Ted Kennedy's death harbored in a comprehensive new health care system.

    • by Lumpy (12016)

      Batman? NOT. Batman would be chewed up and eaten by Anonymous. They are made up of Predators and aliens. together they would chew up Batman and eat him, using his bones as toothpicks.....

      P.S. Dont kill one of the Anonymous predators. they will explode wiping out a 10 city block area...

  • "The Man" better look out!

  • by bogaboga (793279) on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @11:58AM (#31086520)

    In my opinion, the result of democracy should be that everyone can do as they please as long as their actions do not hurt "little ones".

    That's why the west's implementation of democracy leaves a lot to be desired. Why? Because governments only practice "democracy" when the practice suits their [selfish] ends.

    I know there is a way round all this nonsense so let's inform our colleagues down there about ways of circumventing this rubbish.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by russotto (537200)

      In my opinion, the result of democracy should be that everyone can do as they please as long as their actions do not hurt "little ones".

      As soon as you attempt to implement such a thing, you'll find a bunch of people presenting themselves as fragile "little ones" who must be protected from those big bad others. What you've posted is necessary but not sufficient for freedom; you also have to be able to say to those who would use their putative weakness as a tool of oppression to toughen up or suffer; those p

    • by JackDW (904211)

      In my opinion, the result of democracy should be that everyone can do as they please as long as their actions do not hurt "little ones".

      Many would agree with you. But they would quibble over the definition of "hurt". A government could ban almost anything on the grounds that it might "hurt the children".

      • by VShael (62735)

        But they would quibble over the definition of "hurt".

        Too many people equate "hurt" with "cause offense to".

        To which I say, please show me where in the Australian constitution, it says that one has the right NOT to be offended, ever.

    • In my opinion, the result of democracy should be that everyone can do as they please as long as their actions do not hurt "little ones".

      Not quite right... the true definition of freedom would be that people can do what they want as long as their actions don't infringe upon the rights of anyone else. If you do something that infringes upon the rights of some rich powerful person, does that make it ok just because you didn't hurt a "little one"? Obviously not.

    • 80pc back web filter: poll [abc.net.au]
      Unfortunately this isn't so much a failure of democracy as a failure of education. A failure of the media, and those of us who understand why it's such a dangerous waste of money, to get the message out to everyone.

      Seeing that article knocked my confidence a bit, I just hope that the 1000 calls made were an unrepresentative sample..
  • Of course (Score:5, Insightful)

    by HungryHobo (1314109) on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @11:58AM (#31086522)

    They'll just swat ineffectually at anonymous, like a man being swarmed by bees.
    They might even arrest one or 2 people.
    And the /b/tards will laugh.

  • by Dunbal (464142) * on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @12:01PM (#31086560)

    "The group responsible, called Anonymous, is known for coordinated Internet attacks against Scientology and other groups in the past."

          Right. Because anyone calling themselves anonymous are the "same group". Specifically because "Anonymous" means "of unknown name". Heck, we have a bunch of Anonymous Cowards here on slashdot too! Let's track down their IP's and throw them in jail like the terrorists they are! After all, they've been seen on TV to blow up yellow vans, so they must be evil, right?

  • So in order to protest a government that is so paranoid about the internet that it filters out content, hackers attack the websites of that government? [sarcasm] I'm sure they are so much less paranoid now and thinking less about the children.[/sarcasm]
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Ziekheid (1427027)

      You're right though. And to call Anonymous hackers is hilarious.
      We're talking about boards that had its own users infect eachother by saving pictures, renaming them to .js and executing it (something which thousands of users dit themselves expecting something else).
      Fox once called them "Hackers on steroids", the general public there is a total computer retard and knows how to fire up LOIC and get some sites down but that's it.
      It's the numbers that make Anonymous effective, not the brains.
      In b4 angry /b/tard

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Your analysis of Anonymous is correct; they're effective the same way Kobolds can be effective: if there are enough of them, they'll succeed. Anonymous is an infinite number of monkeys banging away on an infinite number of typewriters; collectively they'll write the complete works of Shakespeare.
    • by Gat0r30y (957941)
      No, however they may have to consider the actual cost (in actual dollars) of implementing their idiotic plan. What do you think the actual cost of one day of these shenanigans is to the government? Also, while I do not like to feed the b/east they were rather effective at humiliating the government by making them appear completely ineffectual.
      • they were rather effective at humiliating the government by making them appear completely ineffectual.

        It’s not just an appearance.

  • > The group responsible, called Anonymous

    Wow, this group is pretty active on /., I see comments signed "anonymous" all the time on this site ;-))

  • Well, if I were a normal person and just read this summary, I would conclude that the group are "cyber-terrorists" who are in favor of drug use, rape, zoo sex and child abuse. In addition, by calling themselves Anonymous they're spoiling the concept of anonymity. I really don't think that this action was the best press possible either for the group or for those who are against censorship in general.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by HungryHobo (1314109)

      Yes, unfortunatly the news sites write what they're told and trying to get the point across that they're protesting the existance of the blacklist rather than whats supposed to be on it is a little too much of a fine distinction for most journalism graduates to understand.

    • by thijsh (910751)

      [...] who are in favor of drug use, rape, zoo sex and child abuse [...]

      Anyone who ever read 4chan /b/ can attest to that. ;-)

    • by Lumpy (12016)

      Which proves that normal people are incredibly stupid.

      And we allow these retards to make laws...

    • by calling themselves Anonymous they're spoiling the concept of anonymity.

      Why? It's not like there's any kind of formal organization or hierarchy. The fact is, anyone can call himself Anonymous. There's no leaders, no secret place, no kind of affiliation. They don't even know each other. Knowing that Anonymous did it gives you no particular information.

      As said by Chris Landers and quoted in Wikipedia, "Anonymous is a group, in the sense that a flock of birds is a group. How do you know they're a group? Beca

  • by eparker05 (1738842) on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @12:09PM (#31086684)

    We are anonymous, we are legion! we do not forg...

    Crap! I forgot to log out.

  • Boomerang (Score:5, Informative)

    by westlake (615356) on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @12:19PM (#31086814)
    Anonymous recently turned its attention against the AU government after it said in December that it would block access to sites featuring material such as rape, drug use, bestiality and child sex abuse.

    I can't think of anything more likely to validate the government's actions in the eyes of its socially conservative constituents.

    • Re:Boomerang (Score:5, Informative)

      by ShaunC (203807) on Wednesday February 10, 2010 @01:00PM (#31087378)

      Anonymous recently turned its attention against the AU government after it said in December that it would block access to sites featuring material such as rape, drug use, bestiality and child sex abuse.

      The summary omitted a few things. For one, the proposed blacklist would target otherwise legal adult sites featuring small-breasted women, with the apparent rationale that anyone who doesn't love giant plastic D-cups must be a pedophile.

      Of course, it's a lot easier to vilify Anonymous by saying they're trying to defend CP and donkey porn...

      • This needs to be modded up, as he's right, the rationale had nothing to do with the reasons listed in the article.

        Instead, legal adult sites were able to be blacklisted for the reason above, and there were cases of this happening.

        That sort of BS is what sparked off the Anon vs Australia issue.
  • Sounds like a school-kid level activity.
  • I'm envisioning a half-dozen new datacenters for VPS hosting being built in Singapore the day that this law actually passes...
    • by neurovish (315867)

      I'm envisioning a half-dozen new datacenters for VPS hosting being built in Singapore the day that this law actually passes...

      Because Singapore is a much more open society than Australia?

  • ... they could achieve that with absolutely zero collateral damage. However, I highly doubt any government agency, especially the Australian government, could come anywhere close to achieving that. And that is THE reason it should not even be considered, much less attempted.

"Look! There! Evil!.. pure and simple, total evil from the Eighth Dimension!" -- Buckaroo Banzai

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