Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/03/08/anonymous_italy_hit_vatican/

Anonymous takes down Vatican website

This one's for the kids, and, er, selling indulgences in the Middle Ages

By Anna Leach

Posted in Security, 8th March 2012 12:17 GMT

Italian hackers affiliated with hacktivist collective Anonymous pushed the Vatican's website offline last night. The hack was in "retribution" for the child abuse scandals in the Catholic Church and Vatican-endorsed acts going back thousands of years, the group claimed in a message.

A Jesuit father confirmed to the The Catholic News that the Vatican and the Vatican's news service L'Osservatore had been offline for several hours yesterday mid-afternoon. The sites were temporarily redirecting to other sites carrying a message from Anonymous, Italian newspapers said. Both sites are now back up and functioning.

The DDoS attack was accompanied by a a list of historical grievances, now on paste-bin, explaining that the DDoS hit was retribution for the Holy See's ideological stance on abortion, condoms, its tax status in modern Italy as well as its acts "through the ages" – including burning books, executing its enemies and selling indulgences.

The Vatican takedown looks to be part of a wave of attacks that followed the arrest of LulzSec members in Britain, Ireland and America. Spanish security firm PANDA were also hit on Tuesday night.

The Vatican was hit by a WikiLeaks style scandal a month ago, where high-level internal documents were leaked to the press.

We've asked the Osservatore for a statement. Sadly The Register is not accredited with the Vatican press office. The last update on the Vatican Information Service – from yesterday – only expounds on the theory that Silence is Indispensable for Prayer. ®