Anonymous, a hackers collective or “hacktivist” group with a fearsome reputation, has just confirmed the Anonymous Paris operation against ISIS. The group posted a video on YouTube declaring war on ISIS in the wake of the Paris attacks.
“We first wish to express our solidarity with the victims, the injured and their families,” the Anonymous representative stated.
“Hello citizens of the world, we are Anonymous,” drones a member of the Anonymous group.
The speaker wears a Guy Fawkes mask that assures anonymity. The voice of the presenter has also been distorted to ensure that he remains anonymous (in keeping with the underhanded group’s name). The original video was posted in French, as reported by the Guardian in their piece confirming the Anonymous war with ISIS. The same digital distortion of the voice was used in the French version.
The Anonymous representative goes on to discuss the Charlie Hebdo massacre, saying the group had already expressed their “determination to neutralize anyone who would attack our freedom” and states that ISIS are waging war on Western values like liberty.
“This violence should not weaken us. It has to give us the strength to come together and fight tyranny and obscurantism together.”
Anonymous is a loose collective of individuals that was founded in the early 2000s on notorious online space 4chan.
Anonymous hackers declare war on ISIS. Probably more effective than govt agencies since they trawl dark internet. pic.twitter.com/YWMeW5xx7k
— Rahul Kanwal (@rahulkanwal) November 17, 2015
— PatOndabak (@PatOndabak) November 17, 2015
The shady but formidable hacker group has caused a buzz with its declaration, with many reflecting on the beauty of the notion that the rationality and technological advancement of the secular West may be the instrument it uses to combat terror wrought by Islamic fundamentalists. Some have even mused that perhaps the U.S. government ought to pass intelligence information to Anonymous.
— Mira (Prinzess) Tazn (@mtiraaz) November 17, 2015
Forbes interviewed a security expert from the Center for a New American Security on the issue of ISIS vs. Anonymous.
“The organization was firmly principled when it was founded and remains so. Anonymous has its own set of values and it’s going to defend those things aggressively regardless of whether it disagrees with the CIA or ISIS. It doesn’t align itself around familiar paths,” said Ben Fitzgerald.
Anonymous has just begun leaking the details of suspected extremists, as reported by the Independent. The group is determined to keep ramping up their attacks, and social media accounts will be a big target in days and weeks to come. Metro reports that Anonymous has identified 900 ISIS-related Twitter accounts since Operation Paris began, and those accounts have now been shut down.
The Independent also notes that Anonymous has wrongly identified terrorists and extremists in the past, raising the question of whether the Anonymous group will be stomping on liberties in its quest to protect them.
When it comes to cyber war, Anonymous is good at what it does https://t.co/i5DMuMgDnT
— Fortune (@FortuneMagazine) November 16, 2015
A copycat war has already been declared. The Guardian reports that BinarySec, another loose hacktivist collective, has declared war on ISIS in the wake of the Anonymous announcements. It seems that in addition to facing fire from all sides (Hezbollah, Kurdish forces, pro-Assad militants, and other rebels), ISIS will now be attacked on all cyber-sides as well.
“We as a collective will bring an end to your reign of terror. We will no longer turn a blind eye to your cruel and inhumane acts of terrorism towards all other religions that are not Islam. We’ve watched you behead innocent people, kidnap and murder children, and then launch terrorist attacks in France. This will NOT BE TOLERATED ANY LONGER,” a BinarySec representative remarked.
Will Anonymous defeat ISIS?
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