English Defence League membership list stolen
Hackers pwn hooligans
The personal details of English Defence League supporters have been stolen in a hacking attack on its website, it was reported today.
The far-right group's leadership emailed members in recent days to warn them of the breach, the Daily Telegraph reports.
"As you may have become aware the English Defence League clothing site was recently attacked," the email said.
"This attack took two forms, firstly members' names and addresses were stolen from the donation database [and] secondly the details of members purchasing items from the clothing site.
"The EDL would like to apologise for this security leak. The leadership is doing everything they can to understand how this occurred so it can never happen again."
Police are reportedly investigating the data theft.
The EDL, which claims it is not a racist organisation but a protest movement against the "Islamification" of the UK, has plenty of adversaries who would be interested in its membership list.
Its members, many of whom are linked to football hooliganism, have clashed with Muslims and anti-fascist protestors. The EDL's frequently violent demonstrations have also made it a target for covert intelligence-gathering authorities. Another possibility is that the group has simply become victim of professional cybercriminals.
There is precedent for data theft from Britain's far right. In 2008, a list of more than 10,000 British National Party members was leaked to anti-fascist blogs. It later emerged that two disgruntled party insiders, rather than hostile hackers, were responsible.
At time of writing, the EDL website was unavailable. ®
"....items from the clothing site."
Let me guess, a natty line in black shirts......right?
But nevertheless, I note with interest that nobody is able to deny the hypocrisy of a group labelling themselves "anti-fascist" calling for others views that they disagree with (whether they're racist or not is almost immaterial) to be banned.
That's a slippery slope leading towards true fascism. Goal posts and definitions can and would be moved, and before you knew it perfectly legitimate speech would be banned under the pretence of it offending someone. It's hard to deny that the BNP's views are reprehensible (I personally don't find them offensive per se, just ridiculous, and think the leaders and members of the BNP are at best a laughing stock) but the UAF is going about their "aim" in completely the wrong way. Everyone would like to see an end to racism but the UAF's methods of achieving this are just completely naiive.
By calling for the BNP and its leader's media appearances to be banned (as they have done) they simply come across as trying to declare themselves judge and jury of what people should be able to see and hear and what the general public should and shouldn't find offensive. This totally alienates them from a lot of the potential BNP voters who don't like to be told what to think, and probably gains the BNP votes in the process. And as I've said, calling for another group's views (however objectionable they are) to be BANNED just because you don't like them IS fascist in itself.
What the UAF should be doing, instead of just turning up and protesting/fighting with the EDL such that most people can barely tell the difference between them, is highlighting what the BNP's views are, and why they're ridiculous or objectionable. They'd win far more support that way. As it happens it just seems like they're trying to tell me what I should and shouldn't find offensive.
Suggestion for your next subscription
After the EDL please also join the ELDL (English Language Defence League).