Infamous hacktivist collective Anonymous has served notice that it intends to attack the websites of the Federal Reserve.
The campaign – likely to take the form of denial of service attacks and possibly sit-ins – is in protest at the Federal Reserve's role in the global financial crisis, misuse of US taxpayer funds and supposed role in driving millions worldwide into poverty. The planned cyber-assault is timed to coincide with Flag Day, 14 June.
Hacktivists have christened the campaign Operation Empire State Rebellion. Anonymous is calling for the cyber-protests to continue until Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke steps down, as explained in a video-manifesto (below).
Anonymous began life in the anarchic message boards of 4chan as a protest against the Church of Scientology back in 2008. Its targets since then have included the entertainment industry (and in particular Sony), organisations that withdrew payment facilities from WikiLeaks (Mastercard, PayPal) and HBGary, a security firm that threatened to out Anonymous members.
More recently the loosely knit group has attacked government and police sites in Turkey and Spain over proposed net-filtering laws and the arrest of presumed members of the group, respectively. In many cases these protests have taken the form of denial of service attacks, although there have been exceptions. For example, Anonymous hacked into the websites of both HB Gary and ACS:Law before releasing their email spools as a torrent, much to the embarrassment of the organisations concerned. ®