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What is Anonymous? And what about its war against Islamic State ?

When the Islamic state made its violent appearance in Paris, we clearly understood that France would not remain silent. Just a couple of days after the incident, France launched a brutal air attack against the city of Raqqa, the capital and stronghold of the Islamic State, located in Syria. But, what we did not expect, was the emergence and appearance of Anonymous in this conflict.

The group of highly skilled computer hackers, declared, in a statement, war against the Islamic State and ensured they will pursue them electronically wherever they hide. A few hours ago came the first reports of cyber attacks against the terrorist group and had successfully settled in the net. The terrorist group has responded with threats of counterattacks in the virtual world and safety tips to its members.

Anonymous is part of cyber groups, whereby via the online web, can take collective action, civil disobedience, fighting cyber groups or associations. Anonymous, within the cyber world, is part of Hacktivism, a group of cyber activists with less focused on social networking, information flow etc., but their activities are more engaged on the use of illegal or legally ambiguous digital tools in pursuit of different political purposes.

These tools include web defacements, redirects, denial of service attacks, information theft, website parodies, virtual substitutions, use of the deep web, virtual sabotage and development of malicious software (computer virus) against the enemy.

Hacktivism is the act of hacking, or breaking into a computer system, for a politically or socially motivated purpose, the group have marked political dissent and component and are executed by computer professionals with a broad critical thinking into the system and subterfuge. The biggest event was the Wikileaks hacktivism, when the organization led by Julian Assange leaked hundreds of thousands of US diplomatic cables on its activities mainly in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Anonymous, this skilled hacker group led multiple attacks against governments and steal information they later published online for the rest of the world to read. This group therefore used hacktivism against the geopolitical structure of different states.

Anonymous appeared officially in 2008 as defenders of freedom of expression, Internet and against international organizations such as the religion of Scientology or the Islamic State. Anonymous is not a hierarchical structure and has no leader, but is made up of independent individuals or small groups of activists who, anonymously, are executing sabotage operations. Due to anonymity and lack of an internal or peripheral structure it is complicated to follow these groups. Anonymous is formed by groups interconnected in the web and in the deep web. Unlike other groups, they do not use social networks unless to form small groups to coordinate street protests. Twitter and Facebook closed the official accounts of Anonymous and many other related parties.

This group acts as a hive and its strength lies in the collective strength that is created to attack a target or for protection (as in the case of Pirate Bay and Wikileaks). They are not linked to a single website but to many sites strongly linked to Anonymous by political and strategic links. This includes image boards, wikis associated with these boards, forums on various topics, various Wikis and Chats with the aim of gaining greater presence in the Internet space, organize and have safe and diversified interlinking to move through cyberspace platforms.

Anonymous acts against the Islamic state since his last statement:

Anonymous was already at war with ISIS since the attack on Charlie Hebdo and now has intensified.

They have developed lists of Twitter accounts and websites frequented by extremists, including the physical address of a person accused of being a recruiter of the Islamic state jihadist movement in Europe.

So far they have blocked more than 100,000 Twitter accounts 6,000 propaganda videos and 150 websites affiliated to the terrorist group.
Anonymous has made clear that these attacks do not go unpunished and they will fight, using their methods and following their rules, parallel to the states to crack down the Islamist terrorism.

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