(Image from webpronews.com)
Anonymous has claimed responsibility via their official Twitter account for hacking the Department of Justice, Universal Music Group, and RIAA websites.
According to the tweets by Anonymous, the shut down of the websites is in retaliation for the U.S. federal agencies shutdown of the file-sharing site Megaupload.com. This shutdown was done due to piracy claims made by Universal Music Group.
This attack occurs while controversies about the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA), anti-piracy bills in the U.S. Congress are being reviewed.
Though piracy is detrimental to artists and writers of various media, the individuals committing the piracy should be dealt with. Shutting down services that are used ethically and legally by others because of those who are not, is like using an axe when a scalpel will do.
Using hacking to protest such actions though is also akin to terrorizing which is a group of mini-terrorists (Anonymous) against a big terrorist.(U.S. Justice Department) The fact that the website of U.S. government could be hacked shows the vulnerability of having one’s inner workings computerized and online.
There are ways to let one’s disagreement with governmental actions be known— petitions, telephone calls to Congressmen, discussions and voting and the one that works the best—boycotting or not buying products or services from those you disagree with. The public can voice their opinion without creating an atmosphere of more fear, uncertainty and collateral damage by hacking and shutting down websites. Anonymous may have won this battle but they are amiss the long-term vision to win the war.