Notorious hacktivist group Anonymous has hacked a number of ISIS Twitter accounts and altered the content, making the accounts “fabulously gay,” reports The Memo.
It comes days after the Orlando gay nightclub shooting, where a Muslim gunman opened fire at a gay venue, killing 49 people.
The Memo reports that Anonymous have been “showing their defiance in their own internet-centric way” as they overhaul the ISIS Twitter accounts. Anonymous hackers included features like the rainbow gay pride flag, which was superimposed over the black ISIS flag. The hackers also sent tweets celebrating gay pride, love, acceptance and inclusiveness from the ISIS accounts, sometimes using hashtags like #gaypride and #OrlandoWillNotBeForgotten.
“Nothing can bring back the 49 lives lost at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando this week… But as the world grieves, Anonymous hackers have been showing their defiance in their own internet-centric way…. The group has been breaking into ISIS Twitter accounts and making them as fabulously gay a possible.”
One ISIS man even appeared to out himself on Twitter after Anonymous sent the following message on his behalf:
“Hello World. It’s time I share with you a little secret…I’m Gay and I’m Proud!! #GayPride #OrlandoWillNotBeForgotten!!! #GhostOfNoNation.”
One hacktivist known as WauchulaGhost spoke about why Anonymous chose to attack the jihadist extremists.
“I did it for the lives lost in Orlando… Daesh [ISIS] have been spreading and praising the attack, so I thought I would defend those that were lost. The taking of innocent lives will not be tolerated…. Our actions are directed at Jihadist extremists. Many of our own [group of hackers] are Muslim and we respect all religions that do not take innocent lives.”
WauchulaGhost claims to have hacked more than 250 accounts related to Daesh in the last month, reports Newsmax.
The Anonymous hacker told CNN that a few Anonymous members “discovered a vulnerability” in the ISIS accounts and decided to start “humiliating” the users.
“There was a few of us… that discovered a vulnerability. We thought, ‘Hey let’s go start taking their accounts… and humiliating them.'”
The hackers reportedly wanted to “defend” the victims of the Pulse gay nightclub massacre in Orlando, after ISIS expressed enthusiasm about the attack and support for the gunman.
“You had all those innocent lives lost. I just felt there’s something I could do against the Islamic State to defend those people.”
WauchulaGhost also reported that there are “hundreds of like-minded hackers searching out ISIS-related Twitter accounts.”
The Anonymous hack received a very positive response on Twitter, with people saying that the “gaying-up” of ISIS Twitter accounts brightened their day in more ways than one.
It’s not the first Twitter attack Anonymous has launched against ISIS. In March, Newsweek reported that the hacker collective had released a list of over 9,000 accounts believed to be linked to ISIS/Daesh.
“Anonymous, an online ‘hacktivist’ organization, released a list of 9,200 Twitter account handles it believes are linked to the Islamic State. The release is part of #OpISIS, a movement to curb the terrorist organization’s social media pull.”
The list was compiled in collaboration with two other hacker groups, GhostSec and CtrlSec.
One hacker spoke to the media saying that the collaboration was of historic importance in the hacker community, because normally the members are very “closed off” and not willing to collaborate with people outside their inner circle.
“This is historic amongst the digital world as it’s the first time these groups have come together for something this large…Usually they are very closed off and not willing to work outside of their circles but this has become so large of a problem they’re willing to form an alliance for what is seen as a greater good.”
A member of CtrlSec wrote a Medium post explaining their motivation for releasing the list. The member wrote that the hackers wish to hold Twitter accountable.
It was hoped that the list would get enough attention that Twitter would take action and remove the accounts, thereby impeding “the ability of ISIS to spread propaganda and recruit new members.”
“We’re releasing [a list of suspected Daesh accounts] to hold Twitter accountable. I encourage you all to do your duty not only as a citizen of the world but also as a member of the internet community and re-post this on social media. The more attention it gets the more likely it becomes Twitter takes action in removing these accounts and making a serious impact on the ability of ISIS to spread propaganda and recruit new members.”
[Photo by Getty Images/Matthew Lloyd]