After Westboro Baptist Church announced their plans to demonstrate at funerals and vigils of Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victims, where 20 children between the ages of 6-7 were viciously gunned down, the hacker group known as Anonymous is back on the offensive.
Anonymous, a Robin-Hood-like group of ‘hactivists’ that has been working for almost a decade to ensure freedom of speech on the Internet, doesn’t like it when groups such as WBC abuse that freedom elsewhere.
According to Computer World, the animosity between Anonymous and WBC began in January 2011, when a letter was sent to WBC claiming to be from the hacker group and claiming they were about to target WBC in retaliation for planned picketing of the Arizona shootings. Anonymous said the letter was a hoax, and they had no plans that included WBC.
WBC, believing the letter was real, put out a flyer calling on Anonymous to “bring it.” (See flyer here)
So Anonymous did indeed bring it, defacing WBC’s Website during the great David Pakman’s live radio show, which that day included members from both groups. The hacker group went on to post personal information of WBC’s high ranking members, along with a map of the internal network of the church.
It seems as though Anonymous is back on the attack due to WBC’s attempt to insert themselves into this most recent national tragedy. While many Websites are reporting that the group has reposted the personal information of WBC members, Addicting Info has not been able to verify this. But the Anonymous Twitter feed did feature a message saying “Anonymous never forgets,” with the WBC “Bring It” flyer attached.
And, at the time of this writing, Anonymous Tweeted: “Called every comic book and costume store in the Newtown / Danbury, CT area, and they are all out of stock of Guy Fawkes masks. This is good.” (The ‘Guy Fawkes’ mask is the signature face of the Anonymous movement.) Looks as though Anonymous may be taking their online activism to the streets.
BREAKING: Anonymous tweets: “RIP… just succesfully filed a death certificate for sherley. Her ssn is now blocked”
Anonymous most recently made the news by purportedly claiming credit for a successful hacking mission that led to glitches suffered by Project ORCA, a poll-monitoring system that was supposed to cinch the 2012 presidential election for Mitt Romney. (See coverage here.)
Currently, there is a White House Petition – with over 30,000 signatures in less than two days – calling for the administration to legally recognize the Westboro Baptist ‘Church’ as a hate group (as it has been already recognized by several organizations, including the Southern Poverty Law Center).