“A bill which is a clear violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as removing our legal protections enshrined in the Magna Carta for 800 years,” reads the script for an Anonymous video.
The hacker collective Anonymous is taking credit for a massive cyber-attack on the federal government that made multiple government websites go dark this afternoon — apparently in protest against the Harper government’s controversial security legislation, C-51.
“A bill which is a clear violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as removing our legal protections enshrined in the Magna Carta for 800 years,” reads the script for an Anonymous video posted on YouTube. “Perhaps it was fate that the day the Magna Carta arrived in our country to go on display to the populace that our corrupt government was symbolically pissing upon it and us all.”
The video goes on to say that C-51 targets minorities and forces Canadians to trade privacy for security.
“Today, Anons risked their freedoms for you. We now ask that you follow suit. Stand for your rights, take to the streets and protest this 20th of June,” says the narrator.
“We will not allow our freedoms to be stripped one by one.”
Almost immediately after the hack, one Twitter user who calls himself Blakeando10 and is pictured wearing a Guy Fawkes mask — an image commonly associated with hacking and Anonymous — took credit. His tweet — “It was your move Senators, now it’s ours … we’re just getting started”, using the hashtags #RejectFear and #StopC51.
Treasury Board President Tony Clement said the impact of the attack was widespread.
“It affected e-mail as well as other critical infrastructure and so it is more widespread than just e-mail servers.”
Clement indicated the attack may have also damaged some government information technology systems.
“I think we’re still repairing. The attack is now finished but there is repair work that has to be done that will take some time.”
Clement said he did not yet know whether the attackers were able to access any data on the government computer systems.