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Anonymous thrives under faceless guise

Anonymous has members that are focused on free speech, such as criticising particular legislation, said security strategist Joshua Corman.

Just because they share a name and iconography, does not mean all Anonymous members share the same beliefs.

This is according to security strategist Joshua Corman, who spoke about global hacktivist group Anonymous at this week's ITWeb Security Summit, held at the Sandton Convention Centre.

He pointed out that Anonymous is a leaderless, fragmented group and has a composite nature where the term 'Anonymous' is a brand and archetype that many individual hacktivists have used.

Corman said: “There is nothing new here; hacktivism isn't new, nor is the term Anonymous. Nor is denial of service, defacements and the use of iconography and a decentralised group.”

He warned that disorder invites more disorder, and not all Anonymous members seek to leak information to the public for the “good of society”. He noted that many members have malicious intentions and just “want to see the world burn”.

Censorship is futile

The Internet can't be controlled and any attempt to try further fuels rebellion.

Anonymous has members that are focused on free speech, such as criticising particular legislation, as well as moral outrage and acting as a legislation watchdog. But Corman pointed out that, on the other side, there's LulzSec, MalSec and malicious intent.

“There's no technology solution to this, and throwing more security at it isn't going to stop Anonymous. The old school way of how to disclose and prevent a data breach doesn't work anymore.”

According to Corman, around 270 people have been arrested from Anonymous from 18 countries. He pointed out there are active hacktivist cells in Brazil, Spain and Italy, to name a few.

“There seems to be a correlation between unemployment rate in a country and the number of Anonymous members present in that country,” added Corman.

He concluded: “The Internet can't be controlled and any attempt to try further fuels rebellion. When you don't have centralised leadership, it doesn't matter what most do.”


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