Anonymous Australia Protests Against Government by Hacking NGO Sites

Experts say we're witnessing the decline of hacktivism

By on November 5th, 2012 14:20 GMT

Just like other hacktivists from all over the world, Anonymous Australia is also participating in the online November 5 protests. However, it appears the hackers are having problems when it comes to choosing their targets.

So far, they’ve defaced the websites of several organizations, but some of them have nothing to do with the government. On the contrary, some of them belong to organizations that we’d normally expect to be protected by Anonymous.

For instance, the site of Quality Lifestyle Alliance was among the first to be defaced. QLA is a non-governmental organization (NGO) which focuses on helping people with disabilities.

As Troy Hunt highlights on his personal blog, hacktivism has declined a great deal in the past period.

“’Back in the day’, there were attacks that were based on some form of political or social motivation. Not that far back either – take Anonymous’ attack on Visa and Mastercard, for example. Rightly or wrongly, these guys had stopped processing donations to WikiLeaks so they got DDoS’d,” Hunt explained.

He added, “But more recently it all seems to have gone a little downhill.”

The recent Anonymous attack on “the FBI” as a result of which Apple device IDs have been leaked, and some of UGNazi’s hacks are a perfect example that many operations aren’t based on a “political motive.”

Hunt believes that this happens because most of these hackers are very young and “they almost certainly had very little awareness of either the seriousness of their exploits or the ultimate consequences of their actions.”

“Whilst the groups may have been founded on the basis of a greater cause (or could at least attribute various attacks to that motive), it seems to have descended into nothing more than random ram raids. If anything, that’s a whole lot more worrying than true hacktivism because motive goes right out the window; everyone becomes a target,” he wrote.

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