Hackers attack Australian government over internet filter plans
Hackers have attacked websites run by the Australian government in a co-ordinated protest over the plans to introduce a controversial internet filter that targets pornography and criminal sites.
As part of "Operation Titstorm" the Prime Minister's home page was plastered with pornography. The Australian parliamentary website was also crippled for almost an hour. Among the ministries affected was the Communications Department, which is pressing for a compulsory internet filter for pornography and other "offensive" content.
The Attorney-General's Department said the distributed denial-of-service attack, which blocked access to the sites, was launched by the group "Anonymous", which has also used hacking techniques to attack websites belonging to the Church of Scientology.
Along with the cyberoffensive there were threatening phone calls to high-ranking civil servants. Senior staff in the Parliamentary Services department also had their emails spammed "in spectacular ways", according to Alan Thompson, the departmental secretary. Although the government knew the attack was coming, it was powerless to stop it.
The Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported that a statement from Anonymous said the attack was intended to protest the government's mandatory filter, particularly its blocking of certain pornography sites.
Anonymous said in an email: "No government should have the right to refuse its citizens access to information solely because they perceive it to be 'unwanted'. The Australian government will learn that one does not mess with our porn." A similar attack last September was also attributed to the group.
The federal government which is up for re-election this year plans to introduce a mandatory internet filtering system by early 2011 that will block obscene and crime-linked Web sites. The system would make *Australia*one of the strictest Internet regulators among the world's democracies.
Critics say the filter will not prevent determined users from sharing such content, and it could lead to unwarranted censorship by overzealous officials.
But polls have found that the Australian public strongly supports the planned restrictions. One poll, conducted this week, reported 80 per cent of respondents supported the idea of a filter.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Hackers attack Australian government over internet filter plans - Telegraph