Citing Virulent Homophobia, Anonymous Hacks Ugandan Websites
For the second time in as many months, members of Anonymous took direct action against a homophobic organization. Only this time, it was an entire nation's government. The immediate cause of the well-known hactivist collective's ire is a pending bill that would outlaw homosexuality and punish homosexuals with prison or even death. That's only the latest of the East African nation's actions in a war against homosexuality.
The Global Post has reported that Anonymous teamed up with GreySecurity last week to attack the country's government websites. The includedthe Uganda Petroleum Exploration, Production Department of the Ministry of Energy, Mineral Development and the Department of Agriculture.
Two of the sites were left with the Anonymous logo and a message from the cryptic organization.
"Citizens and government of Uganda, take heed, Anonymous is calling," the message read. "If nobody else will take action and the government of Uganda refuses to see reason, Anonymous will adopt a scorched earth policy towards Uganda's network infrastructure. You should expect us, for we do not forgive and we will not forget."
The groups also reportedly leaked and published the Department of Agriculture's database, which allowed Anonymous to gain access into the department's officials' emails, usernames and passwords.
The website MyUganda.co.ug was hacked by Anonymous as well. The group posted a message and a photo from the funeral of David Kato, the murdered Ugandan LGBT activist whom many consider a martyr to homophobia.
"We have been examining your servers from inside and out for some months now, what we have found should have you very troubled," the message reads. "Files containing passwords in plaintext visible from the web, servers so misconfigured it is a wonder they even work well enough to be hacked, backdoors, spurious admin accounts and at least one of your government servers is currently forming part of a botnet that is now firmly under Anonymous control. Bottom line, we own you."
Uganda made international headlines once again recently after Rebecca Kadega, the speaker, or leader, of the Ugandan parliament, promised to pass the country's controversial anti-gay bill as a "Christmas gift" because Uganda's citizens "are demanding it." Bay men and lesbians pose a "serious threat" to the country's children.
The bill is still pending, but even without it, LGBT citizens have no legal rights. All homosexual activity is already illegal.
Last month, Anonymous targeted the "God hates fags" anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church after its members announced they planned to picket outside Sandy Hook Elementary, the Newtown, Conn., school where a 20-year-old gunman shot and killed more than 20 children. WBC claimed the tragic shooting took place because of the state's law that permits gay marriage.
When Anonymous learned of WBC's scheme, the group leaked the church's leaders' personal information and went after the church's spokeswoman, Shirley Phelps-Roper, by hacking her Twitter account.
Anonymous and others involved with the group vow to lead further attacks against Uganda's online infrastructure.