We've all heard about them, and some of us used to respect what they did until now. Anonymous, the infamous group of hackers who claim to do their work for good causes, has started a cyber-war with Sony that has succeeded in bringing down the PlayStation Network twice now, with no end in sight to the current outage.
Let's take a look at some of the claims they have made to back up their attack. They said they attacked Sony because it was suing people who were hacking the PS3, such as the iPhone hacker George Hotz. They claim they meant no harm to Sony's PlayStation Network users when they brought it down the first time, and came back out saying that they were going to change their tactics for attacking Sony. This was the first lie. More on that later.
When they did change their approach, which went through a series of useless tactics ranging anywhere between ordering pizzas to Sony exec's houses to failed attempts at organizing worldwide sit in boycotts at Sony stores, they realized they weren't getting far. That, and they were being made out to look like a bunch of immature brats who had no real power and made empty threats to try to look cool. The internet equivalent of leaving a burning bag of poo on someone's doorstep. They were failing, and the gamers who already hated them for bringing PSN down the first time were laughing at them the whole time.
Realizing this, they stepped up their attacks. PSN service became sporadic over the coming days, and finally was brought down all together a second time. Sony actually shut the service down from within while trying to find the source of the attacks and a way to deal with them. At first Sony remained tight lipped about the cause, but eventually their developers, like Q Games' Dylan Cuthbert, began letting it slip that it was likely caused by an external attack. After a while Sony decided to admit it, and said service could be out for a couple days.
All along, AnonOps denied any responsibility, which is where lie number two comes into play. Well, more of a contradiction than a lie... Anonymous is not a centralized group of hackers, but instead is made up of many "Anons" that loosely coordinate attacks, but have no real system of authority. As such, one group of "Anons" doesn't have to follow orders given by another. So, while AnonOps may have taken the official stance that they were not responsible for the recent PSN attack, that was only one of their many faces talking. In the end, Anonymous (who officially claimed as a collective that they were not out to hurt the PSN user) is still attacking PSN, regardless of whether one group within Anonymous denies responsibility or not.
Then comes lie number three, where Anonymous claimed that they succeeded with their mission of getting the cases against GeoHot dropped. What they didn't say is the case against Alexander Egorenkov, the other hacker they claimed they were coming to the defense of, is still playing out in Germany. So, this shows that they never actually succeeded in getting their demands met to begin with, and instead were cutting and running because they realized this whole thing had gotten out of their control and splinter hacker groups were still attacking PSN and ruining Anonymous' image.
Lie number four also relates to them claiming success over Sony dropping the case against GeoHot. Their list of demands (only one of which they claim was met) was released on April 5, 2011. Sony's settlement with George Hotz was filed almost a week prior to Anonymous releasing their list of demands from Sony, thus proving even that point a lie.
We have attacked Sony in order to send a message that gamers worldwide have certain rights, and are not merely sources of income. Your temporary inconveniences have allowed a lasting impact to be made upon Sony, and other corporations that are tempted to follow in the pursuit of sacrificing service to customers in exchange for larger profits. Although you may have been unable to game for a day, this event will likely provide hundreds of hours of such in the future. Anonymous are gamers too. And we support the rights of people worldwide, and will stand up for the right of having access to the device that you BOUGHT. Sony has decided not to Sue Geohotz; that is a victory. And that’s one of our purpose in OpSony. Thus, we have achieved what we wanted. Mission accomplished.
Sony Computer Entertainment America (“SCEA”) and George Hotz (“Hotz”) today announced the settlement of the lawsuit filed by SCEA against Hotz in federal court in San Francisco, California. The parties reached an agreement in principle on March 31, 2011. As part of the settlement, Hotz consented to a permanent injunction.
And of course, the most obvious lie that Anonymous states, over and over again... That information is free. Yet, they remain Anonymous. So, it must only be free unless you want to know who they are... Then their hypocrisy shows it's ugly face once more.