A resurgent Anonymous today announced that it had attacked hundreds of websites owned and operated by the Chinese government. The multi headed internet hacking group had a Chinese branch added to its banner last month when a twitter account was registered under the name AnonymousChina andd endorsed by YourAnaonNews. Since then the group has been active in attacking government websites and extracting valuable details from their servers. On the first of April the group tweeted “Chinese hackers , programmers, etc and hackers all over the world, we invite you to be part of Anonymous China, fighting for justice!”, and that call to arms appears to have been answered. The group continues to taunt security attempts made by the Chinese authorities, defacing sites right after they have been fixed and tweeting insults at the supposed enforcers of internet security.
In the last week or so the group have really upped the ante hacking hundreds of websites and stealing details. Most of the data leaks were put instantly on pastebin, an internet wastebasket used by other hacker groups to spread their loot among the masses. The Chinese government usually maintains an autocratic policy over internet usage in the country. Google famously left the country after refusing to impose censorship restrictions on its searches. In more recent cases the Chinese government closed two social networks because of their links to a rumored coup last week. It will be interesting to see the official reaction of the government to the hacking attacks and their ability to stop their continuance.
The breach of security poses several problems for the chinese government. First of all it reveals that their internet defenses are nowhere near capable of allaying attacks from such a group within china, secondly it constitutes a massive leak of what may be some seriously sensitive information and third it shows that there is a widespread and resilient group in China who disagree with the authoritarian government’s policies and are willing to put themselves at risk to cause chaos for the ruling communist party. The first and third are simple enough concepts but the second, the information leaked, is a well that is farr too deep to ssee to the bottom of. We don’t really know all that much about the inner workings of the Chinese government and these leaks, if significant, could bring a whole host of information to light about practices within the country.