Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Anonymous Declares War on Sony

In Sony’s effort to pursue George “GeoHot” Hotz and other Playstation hackers to the ends of the earth (literally), they’ve poked the sleeping giant of Anonymous, the 4chan based hivemind who under the guise of “freedom of information” has now officially declared war on Sony, and has launched attacks ranging from bringing down their websites (and possibly the PSN) to publishing personal information of the executives.
The “press release” by Anonymous says things like “You have abused the judicial system in an attempt to censor information about how your product works” and more tellingly, “You saw a hornet’s nest, and you stuck your penises in it.”
But even though it may seem childish on the surface, Anonymous is not a group to be trifled with. They’ve taken on corporations before, most recently places like Bank of America, Paypal and a whole host of companies that decided to act against kindred spirit Wikileaks in various ways.
Yesterday, they took down Sony and Playstaion.com, and the Playstation Network was non-functional most of the day. There’s no official confirmation that despite claims of “routine maintenance,” this was actually because of Anonymous, but it seems like an awfully big coincidence if not. By taking down the service, Anonymous would presumably be trying to draw customer’s ire toward the company, as most wouldn’t know who was responsible for the outage.
But today there’s a new battlefront, as Anonymous has turned to start finding and publishing personal information about Sony executives. When the info is located, advice on the forums suggest to crank call them on Skype, place Craigslist erotic personals in their name and send their friends and loved ones “STD postcards” announcing a newly acquired disease. No one ever said they were mature, as often being straight up malicious overshadows the primary directive of the group. Nothing is sacred, and dueling with Anonymous is like trying to have a fistfight where your opponent kicks you in the groin, throws sand in your face and stabs you with a razor blade.
As of now, Sony.com and Playstation.com are online, and the PSN is back up almost everywhere. I agree that Sony isn’t handling this hacking disaster particularly well, but it’s hard to condone Anonymous’s tactics either.


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