14 Jun 2011

Anonymous threatens Bernanke

In a YouTube video posted on June 12, hacker group Anonymous announced the launch of Operation Empire State Rebellion on June 14, with the objective to force the resignation of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. As a “first step” in the overall operation, the YouTube video calls upon people to “occupy a public space” until Bernanke leaves his post.

Anonymous’s grievances with the Fed revolve around what the group characterizes as a grossly unfair distribution of wealth in the United States, and a corrupt government organized to protect this status quo.

CNET reports that Anonymous will likely attempt to compromise the Fed website with a denial-of-service attack, similar to attacks it undertook against Sony, PayPal and MasterCard.

A hack of the Federal Reserve might test the government’s response in light of a recent announcement that military retaliation would be considered for cyber attacks.

Anonymous was also singled out by a NATO report on cyber security that raised the spectre of military strikes against cyber criminals.

However, a military response is difficult against diffuse hacker groups, as illustrated by last week’s arrest of three Anonymous members who were residing in the three different Spanish cities.