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Updated: May 30, 2012 23:21 IST

Anonymous expects centre to withdraw internet curbs

K. Srinivas Reddy
Comment (10)   ·   print   ·   T  T  
The Hindu

Blocking of some file sharing websites could have gone unnoticed earlier, but for the serious protest launched by ‘Anonymous’, a group of hacktivists, who systematically targeted government and corporate websites to get their message heard loud and clear – No curbs on internet freedom.

The Indian arm of Anonymous has also called for ‘Occupy Protests’ on June 9 in different cities. And the support from netizens on facebook and twitter (@opindia_back) is swelling. The group which swears by non-violent protests has now threatened to intensify the cyber attacks. They demand that the centre immediately life the curbs on internet freedom and make a statement on the issue.

The hacktivists talked to this correspondent on Internet Relay Chat (IRC) using a variety of nicknames like ‘AnonFengshui’, ‘Anon3x3_kalki’, ‘anamikanon’, ‘gummy’, ‘lucifer’ in the chat.

Different people answered to the same question and here are the excerpts of the chat:

Question: How many members are there in Anonymous?

Anon: We have never counted the members. Perhaps there could be dozens. We can not be called Anonymous, if we count the people. That means we are actually tracking them.

Question: What’s the purpose in hacking websites? What do you achieve by hacking the websites of private companies?

Anon: We are targetting supporters of censorship, not just those in political power. In the name of blocking suspicious sites, they blocked popular sites also. By defacing or DDoSing (Distributed Denial of Service or network attacks) the websites, we get our message across to the people who matter. It is a healthier way of protesting than launching fast unto deaths.

Question: Are you all Indians or from other countries?

Anon: We are sans identity. We have no nationality in that sense. There are people from other countries also but most of the Anons are Indians.

Question: Do you intend to intensify the attacks now?

Anon: As of now we are going easy on the Government websites. We may or may not intensify the attacks. But it depends on the reaction of the Government.

Question: What sort of a reaction are you expecting?

Anon: The reaction we expect is that the Government must bow before its people and free us from censorship. We are expecting that the Government issue a statement making its stand known on internet censorship. We expect the Government to rescind the censorship and ensure that the freedom of speech is protected.

Question: Would it just be defacements or would you also use DDoS attacks also?

Anon: We will use both. The CERT officials who issued advisories on possible DDoS attacks got themselves DDoSed by us!

Question: Do you think people will participate in large numbers in the occupy movement on June 9?

Anon: We expect the number to be large, but it will be a non-violent democratic protest.

Question: Will they be something like Occupy Wall Street protests?

Anon: Yes. Plenty of people are showing interest, particularly the tech-savvy crowd, students, freedom of speech activists etc.

Question: Since Occupy protests are called in several cities, can we expect that websites of organisations in those cities to be attacked?

Anon: Yes. Sure. There would be attacks on sites, but that has no correlation with protests on ground.

Question: Don’t you fear that the police can track you?

Anon: The protesters are not hackers. They are normal people who want their internet back. We all fear getting caught. But when we joined the free internet protest, we threw the police fear out of our minds. The values of freedom are important enough for taking the risk.

Question: What if the Government does not respond to your protests?

Anon: We are average internet users who try to get our message through by Defacing/DDoSing. We don't like to be under pressure anymore. We will bring the Government to it's knees. We will strike hard, no mercy and fast!

Question: What do you want to tell the people?

Anon: Wake up. Speak up, before you lose the right to do it. We want you to support us. We are Anonymous, we are legion, we do not forgive, we do not forget, Government of India! Expect us!

Mr. Rajesh
Do you even know what you are talking about ?
"...websites are easy to "hack".." hacking a financial website is not
like taking a sickle and chopping the paper.
..about "civilized way of coming to terms with govt" , I agree with you,
but how ?
Ah, and Sir.. Brain does not have muscles!

from:  Ganesh
Posted on: Jun 1, 2012 at 01:52 IST

Internet is full of information, news, entertainment and many. It is the gateway to information and censoring it is really restricting people gain and share information.

Internet is a basic right of the people and should be treated thus. We live in a new age and Internet should lead the way.

from:  Ramaraju
Posted on: Jun 1, 2012 at 01:03 IST

Rajesh- What they are doing requirs mental application and courage.
Issuing non-challenges and typing nonsense as "challenges" isn't
exactly a sign of mental stimulation, you know...neither do uninformed
arm-chair commentators qualify as courageous. Indian culture demands
reverence to your elders and betters. As an Indian you should follow
that culture.
Conspiracy theory also suggests Bush personally ordered 9/11 to suck
the USA into a economically and humanly disastrous war.
This is a totally non-violent protest. It might appear to some that
this is over-reaction, but I would refer them to Valliant, who
inspired Bhagat Singh. Valliant said - "It takes a loud voice to make
the deaf hear."

from:  Aritra Gupta
Posted on: May 31, 2012 at 23:54 IST

Rock on folks! Good luck with the non-violent protests and kick Kapil Sibal's butt! Show these corrupt politicians that they cannot deny fundamental rights that actually expose their dirty dealings!

from:  prasanna
Posted on: May 31, 2012 at 22:29 IST

Well, if most of the hackers are really Indian and they want to help the people of India, I think they must hack swiss bank and bring the money stolen by politicians back. There are tons of softwares and many easy to commit mistakes, websites are easy to "hack". This does not give any rational justification of what these hackers are doing, neither it gives any credentials to those Anonymous. Conspiracy theory suggests that this might be a handiwork of social sites who does not want to involve themselves in mighty task of curbing indicent post. There are other more civilized way of coming to terms with govt, rather than using this kind arm twisting technique. So my take is the following (in fact it is a challenge from my side to those hackers): do some thing which makes your brain muscles to fluctuate. Cleaning the dirt which internet has created is not easy. Idiots in govt does not understand this. So use civilized way of protest rather than using threats.

from:  Rajesh
Posted on: May 31, 2012 at 11:42 IST

Freedom of speech is the fundamental right of any human being based on
any moral consensus. It is disgusting for government to curb internet
freedom.

Any profound thinker can say, Larger benefits of internet freedom will overwhelmingly beneficial to the harm caused by internet misuse in the
long run.

Normally I don't endorse any violence, but the cause here really
demands the shown outcry. It should be heard by the decision makers and
correct decision should be made for better future.

V for Vendetta symbol really represents the fight against totalitarian
society. We are not a totalitarian society, don't try to make one now.

from:  Ravinder
Posted on: May 31, 2012 at 09:13 IST

Well, this isn't a good move government. I wouldn't say it's going "legal" as you think. Everyday, because of corruption within your own system, people are suffering a lot. People don't find food, people lose money, people pay high taxes and people aren't just able to live. Nobody is watching over us, the people. Forget the Internet. If you really intended to promote a safe Internet, you should block porn, gambling, drug sites as well. For that matter, you should even block YouTube. One step further will tell you that you should block Search Engines as well, since they direct people towards pirated content. All in all, it's very obvious that you did this for money. Maybe the copyright holders agreed to pay you for this. Care for people not money. I wholeheartedly wish more sites are blocked so that the Government and people would wake up.

from:  Sasanka Panguluri
Posted on: May 30, 2012 at 23:09 IST

The government should never have thought of encumbering free speech. Now they must pay until they bring the internet back to its glory. Their laws violate Indians' fundamental rights to free speech.
It's time they make a stand. Anonymous has.

from:  Damien Dedalus
Posted on: May 30, 2012 at 18:30 IST

Its time for the people of the world to unite and overthrow all barriers to
communication , for long we have been separated and controlled , remove the
artificial barriers and censors , let all things be freely said and expressed .

from:  dr sunny sandhu
Posted on: May 30, 2012 at 17:52 IST

Let us see how the Indian Govt,will supress this movement by hook and crook like other movement

from:  srikant
Posted on: May 30, 2012 at 17:08 IST
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