After what seemed like a rather lengthy lull, free from major attacks by the hactivist collective Anonymous, reports are that the group has hacked hundreds of Chinese government and some company websites.
ZDNet reports that nearly 500 websites were part of the attack, which varied in nature depending on the site. Some sites were just defaced, while personal data from other sites were taken and posted on Anonymous China's Pastebin. The attacks appear to have spanned several days starting on March 30 and the most recent occurring Tuesday evening. Phone numbers and email addresses of what are presumed to be Chinese officials have been leaked.
Here's Anonymous's reasoning for the attack (in English):
Hello, we are Anonymous.
All these years the Chinese Government has subjected their people to unfair laws and unhealthy processes.
People, each of you suffers from tyranny of that regime.
Fight for justice, fight for freedom, fight for democracy!
In the defaces and leaks in this day, we demonstrate our revolt to the Chinese system. It has to stop! We aren't asking you for nothing, just saying to protest, to revolt yourself, to be the free person you always want to be! So, we are writing this message to tell you that you should protest, you should revolt yourself protesting and who has the skills for hacking and programming and design and other "computer things" come to our IRC: http://2.webchat.anonops.com/ channel: #GlobalRevolution.
We are Anonymous.
We are Legion.
We do not forgive.
We do not forget.
The Wall Street Journal reports the message on defaced sites read:
“Dear Chinese government, you are not infallible, today websites are hacked, tomorrow it will be your vile regime that will fall,” the message read in English. “So expect us because we do not forgive, never. What you are doing today to your Great People, tomorrow will be inflicted to you. With no mercy.”
WSJ reports if there were a reason the attack occurred during this timeframe, it is unknown. It does find it "puzzling" that much of the attack's language was written in English.
Some sites were still reportedly showing signs of Anonymous's defacement, but most had regained control. Although this is not the first time Anonymous has targeted China in an attack, ZDNet poses a relevant question: How will the Communist government react?
[H/T TG Daily via Slashdot]