“Hacktivist” Supporters of Julian Assange Allegedly Shut Down MasterCard Website

A group of anonymous “hacktivists” has reportedly launched “Operation Payback”—an online attack whose goal is to shut down the websites of banks and companies that have cut off business ties with Wikileaks. According to Huffington Post, the MasterCard website has been DOWN since approximately five o’clock this morning.

BBC has said that a group of hackers who are supporters of Julian Assange are taking credit for shutting down the MasterCard site. PostFinance, a Swiss bank, has confirmed that its website was attacked after it closed Assange’s bank account earlier this week.

Edited to Add:
From Huffington Post: WikiLeaks Cablegate LIVE Updates

From guardian.co.uk: PayPal admits US pressure over WikiLeaks account freeze


Huffington Post


– Elaine Magliaro, Guest Blogger

83 thoughts on ““Hacktivist” Supporters of Julian Assange Allegedly Shut Down MasterCard Website”

  1. Wiki Hornet’s Nest

    Posted on Dec 14, 2010
    By Eugene Robinson


    “… the wildly popular social networking sites Facebook and Twitter took down the pages that Anonymous members had been using to coordinate their electronic warfare. This brings me, finally, to those unsettling questions about censorship and free speech.

    When Iranian protesters were challenging the thuggish regime of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the mullahs last year, censors managed to shut down television coverage. But the world learned what was happening via Facebook and Twitter. Likewise, those Internet sites—Facebook has more than 500 million users worldwide, and Twitter an estimated 200 million—are important conduits for pro-democracy advocates in places such as China and Cuba.

    So who gives executives of private companies the right to decide that some unapproved speech will be encouraged and some will be suppressed? Do we want the people who run Amazon, PayPal, Facebook, Twitter or perhaps even—shudder—Microsoft, Apple or Google making political decisions on our behalf?

    For my part, I don’t think I do. It seems to me that especially as Internet firms reach near-monopoly status, we should be increasingly uncomfortable with them making political decisions of any kind—even those with which we might agree.

    I don’t particularly enjoy defending Assange, WikiLeaks or a bunch of irresponsible hackers. But I don’t want the companies that regulate interaction and commerce on the Internet deciding whose views are acceptable and whose are not.

    he “terms of service” agreement that should take precedence is the First Amendment.” end excerpt

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