Hacktivism has exploded in the public sphere as of late. With the likes of Wikileaks and Snowden the phrase hacktivism has become a household term. It is hard to forget the spooky image Anonymous presents with the creepy V for Vendetta masks and the tageline “We are legion.”. While their image is somewhat prolific I find that many people are still confused about what Anonymous does and whether they are bad or good. When speaker to some older students this week one person thought that they were a terrorist organisation. Some of this probably comes down to the medias representation coupled with the organisations own imposed image of vengeful intelligence.
In Anonymous’ most daring hack they infiltrated the emails of Aaron Barr, of HBGary Federal, that were attempting to track down hacktivists. By publishing his emails online, with a handy search bar, they managed to expose some dodgy dealings that had been taking place leading to Burr’s resignation and a congress initiated investigation. This is Anonymous’ most straight forward and rewarding endeavor, many of their projects involve antics that the media has labeled juvenile.
Hacktivism was founded to expose injustice and liberate the masses of corporate control on mass. Wikileaks uncovering of government documents has come the closest to creating this goal as the injustices of American war maneuvers, such as unchecked drone strikes, have seen reform since the release of crucial government documents by Wikileaks and co. Hacktivism is a growing phenomenon and something that we should probably get use to us our lives become more and more digitized.