After flexing their "hacktivist" muscles on multiple occasions, the hacker collective Anonymous has drawn the attention of the National Security Agency.
According to a recent report, the NSA believes that Anonymous could knock out power in the US within 1-2 years.
While NSA director Gen. Keith Alexander admits that Anonymous isn't currently on any "threat list", the proven ability of the collective to hack high-level websites does make some officials nervous.
The Wall Street Journal reports that some experts think this would be the next logical step for the hacker collective. "It's a real threat," said James Lewis, a cybersecurity specialist at the Center for Strategic and International Studies who is currently researching the group. "You want to occupy Wall Street? How about turn Wall Street off? Even for a day."
Still, others think this is just a case of government fear-mongering. One blog associated with Anonymous responded to the NSA statement by writing "“Ridiculous! Why should Anonymous shut off power grid? Makes no sense! They just want you to feel afraid.” Even the Wall Street Journal admits that Anonymous has never admitted that taking down the nation's power grid would be a goal for the organization.
Actions credited to "Anonymous" are actually carried out by a number of different people, working anonymously to make a statement against organizations they perceive as antagonistic towards Internet freedoms or personal liberty.
In recent months, Anonymous has targeted the FBI, the CIA, and the Justice Department. Anonymous also recently hacked the email account of the President of Syria: the password was 12345.