When Anonymous released a video threatening to “destroy” Sony’s network, it was a fair assumption that the group would recommence what they did earlier in the year, and DDoS the PlayStation Network to bring it down and cause maximum disruption. Luckily, this now appears to not be the case.
The subsection of Anonymous dedicated to attacking and damaging Sony, #OpSony initially had the opening welcome message on their IRC as “Hello, and welcome to Operation Sony! | Must kill SONY for siding with destroying our lovely home (The Internet). Let’s give them hell.” However, as new users began to flood in, a debate quickly arose as to whether Anonymous should target the PlayStation Network. While some did push for an attack of the network, the general consensus was to not take down the network, with the welcome message changing to “NO SOPA! NO ATTACK ON PSN!” The ‘pad’ used for planning operations was also updated to say “That means we are NOT touching the Play Station Network. Don’t mention it again!”
The group also decided to not ‘dox’ (find personal information about a person online) normal customers, but did say that “Doxing will occur on Sony executives.” It’s sad to see that some innocent Sony workers are now at risk (only a few individuals have control over the company’s political standpoint), with the group already starting to post sensitive information – including credit card numbers – of Sony employees, one of which works for PlayStation. The next step is said to be to post the information as publicly as possible, and possibly send rude objects to employees’ addresses.
Along with doxing, the group plans to deface Sony websites with popular internet memes with an anti-SOPA twist, and place links to copyrighted material on their sites – some users suggest making all of Sony’s films and music available to download for free on Sony’s own sites.
Of course, with Anonymous not having a centralized leader, #OpSony could always change its mind, or a new Op could form. The IRC did have its fair share of comments supporting a PSN attack:
“If you want to get your message across, PSN is a great way to get ppls attention”
“Just taking down the DB for some time would make Sony worried about all the CC numbers even if we don’t copy the numbers. Parents would get really frightened at PSN’s safety and players wouldn’t get any new PSN games. Database would be backup restored, everything is somewhat back to normal and attention will be added.”
“Please consider a possibility that the PSN could be deleted for a short time. Sony declares the database to be leaked. Parents all over the world panic and never dare enter credentials into PSN again. Sony loses money.”
It’s certainly a relief to see that the PSN isn’t currently a target, but “Sony Computer Entertainment is”, which means you will probably still see signs of Anonymous’ actions in the coming weeks.
Do you condone Anonymous’ plans to attack essentially faultless Sony employees, along with the company as a whole? What is your take on Sony’s support of SOPA, an act that could potentially destroy internet free speech and would give the US government and IP holders huge powers over what is posted online? Share your thoughts in the comments below.