Recent claims from computer hacking group, Anonymous, indicate that plans have been made to temporarily bring down the internet globally.

Group members have announced that they will launch a large distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on the 13 Root Domain Name System (DNS) servers, which control the routing of all internet traffic and make it possible for internet users to reach web site destinations by typing in a domain name in their browsers.  The desired outcome of the attack is to disable internet connection worldwide by preventing the use of the HTTP internet which is the most widely used function of the Web.  The attack has been called ‘Operation Global Blackout’ and is scheduled to occur tomorrow, 31 March 2012.

According to the group, the operation is being carried out to:

“…protest SOPA, Wallstreet, our irresponsible leaders and the beloved bankers who are starving the world for their own selfish needs out of sheer sadistic fun, on March 31, anonymous will shut the Internet down.”

There has been a degree of speculation over the legitimacy of the purported attack and certain members of the Group have denied any connection with these plans and have even gone as far as suggesting reasons as to why such an attack will not be successful.  However, it is clear from social media postings that the proposed attack will at least be attempted, whether or not there is unity within the Group.
The precise details of this attack are still unknown, as is whether the attack is capable of success; after tomorrow we will know whether our internet service is deeply flawed by its fragility and in desperate need of a security boost.  While such a feat will undoubtedly be a show of strength, it would also alert the authorities, internationally as well as our litigation friendly neighbours on the other side of the Atlantic.  There is no doubt whatsoever that taking a root DNS server offline would be the catalyst to finally labelling Anonymous as a bona fide “terrorist” organisation and all that would entail.  Hackers, expect a significant clamp down if you do pull this off…