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Hacktivism

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Definitions Edit

Hacktivism (an amalgam of the words "hacking" and "activism")

covers operations that use hacking techniques against a target's Internet site with the intent of disrupting normal operations but not causing serious damage.[1]
is a term often used to refer to the use of computers and online networks to conduct politically or socially motivated protest.[2]
[is] [m]alicious cyber activity conducted by issue-motivated groups or individuals for the purpose of promoting a particular cause or targeting a particular person or organisation associated with an issue or cause.[3]

Overview Edit

"Examples are web sit-ins and virtual blockades, automated email bombs, web hacks, computer break-ins, and computer viruses and worms."[4]

The earliest example of hacktivism predates the public Internet. In 1989 the U.S. Department of Energy and NASA computers were penetrated by a group called Worms Against Nuclear Killers (WANK).

The main practical limitations to hacktivism are that the longer the attack persists the more likely it is that counter-measures are developed and put in place, perpetrators identified, and groups penetrated by law enforcement investigators.[5]

References Edit

  1. Activism, Hacktivism, and Cyberterrorism: The Internet as a Tool for Influencing Foreign Policy, at 241.
  2. Cybercrime: Conceptual Issues for Congress and U.S. Law Enforcement.
  3. ACSC 2015 Threat Report, Glossary, at 26.
  4. Activism, Hacktivism, and Cyberterrorism: The Internet as a Tool for Influencing Foreign Policy, at 241.
  5. Reducing Systemic Cybersecurity Risk, at 32.

External reading Edit

  • Kent Anderson, "Hacktivism and Politically Motivated Computer Crime" (2008) (full-text).

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