Hackers, whistleblowers and lulz. These are all people who developed with the innovative advancement of media-technologies. Their counter-cultural utilisation of technologies are seem as an invasion of the technologies purpose, particularly when information technologies are released for the general public. However, are these hackers doing this just because they can? No, they have a purpose.
Many social activist movements have a portion of hackers that claim they are invading confidential media technologies to unveil the truth. A group infamously known as “Anonymous” is an example of where social activism takes place online. They are described as “The “hacktivist” collective has no face, and no leadership. Its tagline is simply “we are legion”, referring to its allegedly large numbers of individuals.” (Molloy & Tidy, 2020). They claim to fight totalitarianism and the unchecked power of governments. By hacking into information systems and threatening to reveal them they say they are doing their part as social activists to create a free world.
What have they done?
- In 2012 they brought down the FB1 website
- In 2011 sister organisation Lulzsec broke and unblocked systems for VISA, Mastercard etc.
- Targeted totalitarian government computer systems of Libya & Tunisia
The hacktivist have seemed to make an appearance again following the death of george floyd (Molloy & Tidy, 2020) and have been credited for minor attacks on the Metropolitan police websites crash (Beran, 2020). Some question their come back as not as effective as previous attacks (Rosenblatt, 2020) however, the group is back and acting as the muscle for the blm movement (Molloy &Tidy, 2020).