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Activists take down Australian government websites

By Michael Squires     Feb 10, 2010 in Technology
Attacks are believed to be in protest against Australia's impending Internet filtering legislation and the Classification Board's decision to ban the sale of porn films in Australia which shows small-breasted women.
Operation Titstorm still flooding government web sites for a second day.
In a continuing protest against Internet censorship, activist group Anonymous has brought down Australian government websites in protest against Internet filtering and pornography censorship laws. The attack, dubbed Operation Titstorm, brought down a number of government websites.
In a bizarre twist Anonymous claim that photos of small-breasted women will be banned
as it may resemble child pornography.
Anonymous gave advance warning to the government and public but it would appear the government did not heed the advice or could not stop Anonymous.
The DoS attacks are due to begin at 7pm Australian Eastern Time (2am US PDT) Wednesday and will target the websites of The Department of Broadband, Communications & the Digital Economy (DBCDE), Minister for DBCDE Stephen Conroy, and the website of the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA.)
In a statement Anonymous said,
Claiming to be cracking down on 'simulated child pornography,' many depictions of women with small breasts in pornography have been banned.Officials cannot claim that they believe the models in these movies are in fact underage, as the production the titles that have been affected are heavily regulated to ensure the age of the models.
Instead they are relying on earlier ambiguous wording that allows pornography featuring models that 'appear to be' under 18 years of age to be treated in the same manner as actual child pornography.
Groups lobbying against the government's impending filter suggest the attacks may be doing more harm than good. Stop Internet Censorship co-founder Nicholas Perkins said,
Reports that attacks on Federal Government websites are being used to draw attention to the government’s plan to introduce a mandatory Internet filter are alarming, and any illegal action of this nature must be condemned.
By attempting to bring down or deface government websites, a minority of Internet users have brought negative attention to what is a very important issue for Australians.
Stop Internet Censorship is a group of people committed to educating the Australian people about the government’s attempts to introduce a mandatory Internet filter. This filter will be ineffective, inefficient and can be used by future governments to censor public debate within Australia. Stop Internet Censorship believe that educating Australians on the government’s plans by talking to friends, families and co-workers is an important part of the campaign against Internet censorship.
Anonymous have been recruiting helpers through forums and bulletin boards.
A spokeswoman for the Attorney-General's Department indicated the Government was aware of the attacks and had briefed agencies identified as targets.
This is not the first time government sites have been hacked in protest. The official web site of the Prime Minister was last attacked on September 9, 2009 as well as today.
The Department of Defence Cyber Security Operations Centre continues to monitor the situation
The world is watching.
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