Hackers representing the interests of international hacktivist group Anonymous have this week defaced several Queensland government websites and are threatening to expose the user data of an Australian ISP to protest the proposed data retention scheme in Australia.
The hacks, first spotted by News.com.au, saw the group known as Operation Australia deface 10 Queensland websites to protest the state government allegedly tracking its citizens.
The Anonymous members behind Operation Australia are deeply troubled by the state of the National Security inquiry which plans to discuss implementing mandatory retention of user data by ISPs for two years under a plan proposed by Attorney-General Nicola Roxon.
A spokesperson for the group who asked to remain anonymous, told us this afternoon that it will continue to hack and deface government sites as a form of protest "while the gov[ernment] continues to attack its citizens [and] treat us like criminals".
The group also made threats against an unnamed local ISP, saying that if the National Security Inquiry continued it would leak data to show how unsecured the information of citizens would be if it had to be retained at a service provider level.
The spokesperson assured us though that user data would stay safe.
"we do not plan to release ppls details altho stay tuned for more leaks, maybe from n isp to show how unsafe our data is [sic]," the spokesperson said.
The hackers haven't as yet made a submission to the National Security Inquiry but said they'd consider a submission made on behalf of Anonymous.
Along with the data retention scheme, the hacktivists denounced the TPPA, saying that it would "allow some pretty nasty stuff for AU citizens". They wouldn't rule out protesting that, either.
As far as Operation Australia is concerned, the spokesperson did say that some members are geographically based in Australia but that they remain citizens of the internet at all times.
Below is the text that the group posted onto the Queensland government websites, taken from Cyber War News:
T h e J o k e N e t w o r k – Continuing the lulz since 2o12 :.
: Welcome, Australian boys and girls. :
: You may have heard about the proposed National Security changes. :
: You probably don’t like them. We certainly don’t. :
: Do you like the idea of surrendering your passwords or people spying on your :
: Facebook or Twitter accounts? :
: Nope, we didn’t think you did. :
: Your government seems to think that everyone in Australia is a terrorist. :
: Do you still want to believe in your paranoid leaders? :
: If we were Australian, we sure wouldn’t… :
: @Op_Australia ~ irc.anonops.com #opAustralia :
: We are Anonymous. We are also the Joke Network. :
: We are Legion. We are continuing the lulz. :
:. Expect us. Both of us. .:
Image: Stefan Postles/Getty Images