WikiLeaks-Loving Hackers Strike MasterCard, PayPal

Companies who shunned site targeted
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 8, 2010 5:32 AM CST
Members of the media gather around a demonstrator near Westminster Magistrates Court in London.   (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

(Newser) – WikiLeaks' bank accounts have been frozen, a host of companies have stopped doing business with it, and its founder is in custody, but is anybody coming to its defense? Step up, 4chan. "Anonymous," a group linked to the notorious message board, has launched denial-of-service assaults against firms that it says have "bowed to government pressure," the BBC reports. "Operation Payback" has taken MasterCard's website offline; potential future victims include Amazon and Visa.

Attacks on PayPal only succeeded in taking down the company blog, but Swiss bank PostFinance lost website service for at least 24 hours, Ars Technica reports. A spokesperson for Anonymous—which is also helping create hundreds of WikiLeaks mirror sites—says the organization has "always taken a strong stance on censorship and freedom of expression on the Internet and come out against those who seek to destroy it by any means."

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