God hates hackers: Anonymous warns Westboro Baptist Church, ‘stop now, or else’
Via Digital Trends:
Vigilante “hacktivist” group Anonymous has a new target: Westboro Baptist Church. In an open letter to the notorious Kansas-based church, Anonymous promises “vicious” retaliation against the organization if they do not “cease & desist” their protest activities.
“We will target your public Websites, and the propaganda & detestable doctrine that you promote will be eradicated,” says the letter, “the damage incurred will be irreversible, and neither your institution nor your congregation will ever be able to fully recover.”
Led by pastor Fred Phelps, Westboro Baptist has become infamous for picketing the funerals of US soldiers — events know as “Love Crusades” — and for their display of signs bearing inflammatory messages, like “God hates fags.” The church has long argued that their Constitutionally-protected right to freedom of speech allows them to continue their derogatory brand of religious activism.
Anonymous also considers itself an “aggressive proponent” of free speech, having recently launched attacks on organizations they consider to be enemies of that right: Companies like PayPal, Visa and Master Card, who stopped processing donations to WikiLeaks after the anti-secrecy organization released a massive cache of US embassy cables; and the government of Egypt, which attempted to cut off its people from the world by shutting down all Internet and mobile phone connections during protests there.
Other Anonymous targets include the Church of Scientology and, most recently, cyber-security company HBGary, which attempted to infiltrate Anonymous. In response, the loose-knit hacker group released 71,800 HBGary emails, which revealed highly dubious activities by the company, almost instantaneously destroying HBGary’s reputation and potentially setting it on a path to financial ruin.