Anonymous has been working approximately during the last five years. However, many people don’t know what it is, probably because media have shown a great skill to present it in a totally wrong way. More amazing is that authorities, even police, show a huge ignorance (willingly or not) about the matter.
First, what isn’t Anonymous?
Anonymous isn’t organized, and hasn’t a centralized infrastructure. Anonymous hasn’t a leadership, for that reason one of the images is that figure with no head. Anonymous isn’t a hackers organization, or a cyber-terrorist organization, or a hacktivists organization. Anonymous isn’t an organization.
So, what is Anonymous?
As someone said, “If you believe in Anonymous, and call yourself Anonymous, you are Anonymous.” (Anonymous: behind the masks of the cyber insurgents). That is a good definition.
There are thousands of places in internet (social networks, web pages, blogs) where anyone can publish statements or calls for a campaign or operation in the name of Anonymous. It’s very easy to find them, just looking for the term “anonymous” in any search-engine: DuckDuck Go, Start Page (obviously Google and Yahoo, as searchers collaborating with NSA (U.S. National Security Agency) snooping, aren’t recommended for this kind of search).
The operations can be done in different ways (sending of email messages, Twitter storms, DDoS attacks, …), sometimes legal and sometimes illegal ways. Legal / illegal isn’t synonym of fair / unfair, and everyone must decide if always will obey laws, even when they are unfair, or will not. Anyway, in both ways it’s possible to support Anonymous operations.
Because of the nature of Anonymous, there isn’t a defined ideology along the operations. Anyone can choose which operations will support, according to targets, goals and methods in each proposed operation. If the call is succesful, people agree with the idea and enough people join that campaign, it becomes an Anonymous operation; if it isn’t succesful and just a few people support it, it doesn’t become an Anonymous operation. That is the difference, and that is all.
Here an informative video, from thehackernews.com
Now that it has been explained what Anonymous is, we can see how ridiculous was, for example, when Spanish police arrested three guys and announced that they, Spanish police, “had dismantled the leadership of Anonymous in Spain”. That was what this cop holding a Guy Fawkes mask said in a famous press conference. He (or his partner, I don’t remember) also said that “Anonymous is a group as dangerous as Al Qaida, Taliban or North Korea”. There are people still laughing, and it happened at 2011.
Or perhaps they weren’t as stupid as it seemed, and police thought that the arrested persons could be punished with worse sentences if they were accused of being the leaders of a terrorist gang, instead of merely attacking some web pages. Stupid or evil police, that is the doubt. Anyway, it seemed that the judge wasn’t very impressed by the hilarious press conference, because he released these “terrorists” the next day.
And recently we have had another case in Spain. The politic party in the government here, PP (Partido Popular), caught in a known corruption crime that is being investigated, has put a complaint against Anonymous (hadn’t it been dismantled?) because someone, in the name of Anonymous, published in internet the accounts of the party (El PP denuncia a Anonymous por filtrar la contabilidad del partido). Like Big Brother Obama and Edward Snowden, felons chasing whistleblowers. But, in this case, there isn’t doubt between stupid or evil, Government and PP rulers are both things: corrupt and fools.
And so, I’m an Anon. As dangerous as a member of Al Qaida, a Taliban or a North Korean.