Anonymous wants DDoS attacks recognized as speech
'No different than Occupy protests'
The loosely organized hackers of Anonymous don't just launch distributed denial-of-service attacks for the lulz. They do it to send a message, which is why they've petitioned the Obama administration to recognize DDoS as a legal form of protest.
The petition, which was filed on the White House's We the People website, argues that DDoS "is not a form of hacking in any way" and that it's really not much different than repeatedly hitting the refresh button in your web browser, albeit on a much larger scale:
It is, in that way, no different than any "occupy" protest. Instead of a group of people standing outside a building to occupy the area, they are having their computer occupy a website to slow (or deny) service of that particular website for a short time.
The petition goes on to demand that anyone who has been jailed for participating in a DDoS attack should be immediately released – a nice touch – and that anything related to the attack should be expunged from their criminal records.
DDoS attacks are indeed one of the go-to methods used when Anonymous wants to make a point. The group used the technique to take down UK government websites in August in protest of the treatment of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, and again in November in retaliation for Israel's bombing of sites in Gaza.
Not all such attacks are launched for similarly high-minded reasons, however, and given the recent spate of cyberattacks on US banks – which are now believed to have been orchestrated by the Iranian government – this petition is unlikely win much sympathy from the White House.
Not to mention the small problem that the We the People site seems to have become a favorite forum for pranks and jokes. Recent oddball petitions have included one request to build a real-life Death Star, and another to remake the American justice system in Judge Dredd's image.
Then again, I guess that means the pro-DDoS petition isn't actually the silliest idea we've heard.
The petition does not indicate who originally filed it, or whether it represents the work of an organized group or just one person. But hey, this is Anonymous after all, and if you say you're affiliated, you are.
Whoever filed it, though, they don't have much company so far. The petition will need to reach a goal of 25,000 signatures to receive an official response from the Obama administration. As of this writing, it had just 681. ®
Find out who signed the petition ......
... then go and ring their doorbell repeatedly and continuously. They'll understand and respect your position.
Let me get this straight
What Anonymous wants, in essence, is the right to take down my websites, destroy my business and my livelihood resulting in me having to lay off my staff, whose own livelihoods are then ruined, with absolutely no recourse for myself to prosecute those responsible.
And all on the say-so of some shitbrained little internet vigilante who might mistake my business for some other arsehole's scam, with no trial, no evidence, just hearsay on some Twitter feed?
You can fuck that idea off right bloody now.
One essential flaw with this reasoning...
A protest, done decently, is based on a two way communication; the protest group makes their opinion heard (which obviously opposes another opinion) but normally (should) always allows the opposition to make their voice heard as well. When done right a protest may end in a debate which might eventually help to bring both parties together.
DDoS on the other hand does not allow for such situations considering how it totally renders the website of the opposition useless. In my opinion its hardly a form of protest but instead takes more the form of total oppression: "We don't like what your website has to say so we're taking it out completely".
It doesn't matter on which "side" you are; fact remains that one party totally takes away the voice (or online capabilities) of the other.
And although I agree that it may fall within the definition of a protest ("A statement or action expressing disapproval of or objection to something.") one should have at least a some bit of common sense to realize that you can't use that to justify every take of action; there are limits.