Anonymous emerges as the leader in 2016’s Trending Hacktivist Groups
Anonymous continued to remain at the top in the top trending hacktivist group, says SurfWatch Labs based on the data collected on threat intelligence and social media hype. The hacktivist group was followed by Turk Hack Team (THT), New World Hacking (NWO), and Ghost Squad Hackers.
In comparison to other years, the data shows that hacktivism has decelerated and lost its impetus but still has managed to cause enough damages to gather mainstream media attention.
The government agencies were hit the most by hacktivism campaigns says the security firm with the most publicity having been created around the now-notorious COMELEC hack by Anonymous Philippines and Lulzsec Philippines, during which information for around 50 million Filipino voters were disclosed.
Other than this incident, at the start of the year, the hacktivist groups created a lot of attention to their causes via the massive DDoS attack on BBC, the DDoS attacks on Donald Trump’s websites part of #OpTrump, the DDoS attacks on the Bank of Greece part of #OpIcarus, and the ones on Nissan part of #OpKillingBay.
The Bank of Cyprus, the pulling down of ISIS Twitter profiles followed by the Belgium attacks, and the leak of data from NASA’s internal network were some of the other small hacktivism incidents that also managed to garner a lot of attention to causes and the groups behind them.
During the first months of 2016, the top five hacktivism campaigns were #OpTrump, #OpKilling Bay, #OpWhales, #OpIsrael, and #OpAfrica. Since #OpIcarus was supposed to last for the entire month of May, it was not included in the list. However, the campaign is sure to become a support in Anonymous’ standard operations.
Former big names such as the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) and Lizard Squad seem to have disappeared with no or little activity from its members, points out SurfWatch Labs in its report. Looks like the SEA group members are perhaps busy avoiding getting arrested considering that the US has filed former charges against members of the group.