Hackers linked to the now infamous 'hacktivist' group Anonymous have begun a campaign to target child pornography websites known as #OpDarknet. The group has allegedly taken down more than 40 websites so far and it seems they don't plan on stopping anytime soon...
According to a Pastebin press release from the group, they warned the hosting companies beforehand, but when they took no action and continued to republish the content, they decided to take matters into their own hands. The group are particularly aiming to eradicate child pornography from those operating on the Tor Network, a super secure networking solution created by the US navy which obscures the identity of internet users.
The Tor Network's secure nature means that it's used by a range of different people, like those who share pirated material, but it also unsurprisingly attracts those wanting to view child pornography too.
The final 'demands' section of the press release makes it clear that the group are serious about continuing, as it reads:
"Our demands are simple. Remove all child pornography content from your servers. Refuse to provide hosting services to any website dealing with child pornography. This statement is not just aimed at Freedom Hosting, but everyone on the internet. It does not matter who you are, if we find you to be hosting, promoting, or supporting child pornography, you will become a target."
This most recent activity raises some interesting questions about whether online vigilantism should be seen as acceptable in certain circumstances, as many of those who criticised the actions of hackers earlier in the year are now applauding their efforts.