Analysis: WikiLeaks battle: a new amateur face of cyber war?The website attacks launched by supporters of WikiLeaks show 21st-century cyber warfare evolving into a more amateur and anarchic affair than many predicted.
While most countries have plowed much more attention and resources into cyber security in recent years, most of the debate has focused on the threat from militant groups such as al Qaeda or mainstream state on state conflict.
But attempts to silence WikiLeaks after the leaking of some 250,000 classified State Department cables seem to have produced something rather different -- something of a popular rebellion amongst hundreds or thousands of tech-savvy activists.
"The first serious infowar is now engaged," former Grateful Dead lyricist, founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation John Perry Barlow told his followers on Twitter last week. "The field of battle is WikiLeaks. You are the troops."
Some of the more militant elements on the Internet clearly took him at his word. A group calling itself Anonymous put the quote at the top of a webpage entitled "Operation Avenge Assange," referring to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
Online collective Anonymous appears to be using social networking site Twitter to coordinate attacks on websites belonging to entities it views as trying to silence WikiLeaks.
Targets have included MasterCard, Visa and a Swiss bank. All blocked payments to Wikileaks on apparent U.S. pressure.
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Wikileaks: Stop Us? You'll Have to Shut Down the WebThe arrest and detention of Julian Assange Tuesday on charges of rape and sexual assault was at the least a convenient development for government leaders who've sought ways to contain the leader of the controversial website Wikileaks.
But in an exclusive interview with ABC News' Jim Sciutto, Wikileaks' spokesman Kristinn Hrafnsson insisted Assange's arrest won't alter the site's calculated release of thousands of secret government cables, which still continues according to plan. The site published a new slate of cables Wednesday.
"It is not derailing us in any way," said Hrafnsson, adding that a group of five to six people is running Wikileaks' operations in Assange's absence. "This is a turning tide and starting a trend that you can't really stop unless you want to shut down the Internet.. Click Here for more info.
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