Anonymous plans busy new year

Any hopes that the loose hacker collective Anonymous would fade away after a series of high profile arrests last year were invalidated after the outfit posted a New Years message.

Anonymous issued a statement for the world to “Expect us 2013”. It statement came with a video which boasts of its campaigns and exploits carried out in 2012.

These included a temporary shutdown of the U.S. Department of Justice, the FBI, Universal Music, and the Motion Picture Association of America’s websites in protest of the US government’s indictment of the operators of popular file-hosting site MegaUpload.

The video also mentions Anonymous’ campaign against Syrian government websites because of that government’s alleged shutdown of the internet, along with Anonymous’ actions against the Israeli government in protest of government attacks on Gaza.

It is especially proud of the hack into the Westboro Baptist Church’s website, in response to plans by the controversial church to picket the funerals of those massacred at the elementary school in Newtown.

Operations which are listed in the video are only examples, there are far more and some of them still running, like Operation Syria, the video said.

However, the ironically named security outfit McAfee claimed that Anonymous was declining. When it listed its 2013 Threat Predictions last week it said that the hacker crew was very last year.

It claimed that since Anonymous had a lack of structure and organisation, too many false claims, and hacking for the simple joy of it has had an effect on the group’s reputation.

It believes that higher-level professional hacking groups may take up the slack, and promote a rise in military, religious, political, and “extreme” campaigns.