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Hacktivist group Anonymous Malaysia resurfaces, vows cyber attack against govt over data breaches

[ UPDATE 26/1/2021 16:00 ]: NSC has issued a statement that it is viewing the threats made by Anonymous Malaysia seriously. More details here.

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Anonymous Malaysia, a group of hacker activists or hacktivists, has resurfaced after more than five years to pledge a concerted cyber attack against government websites and online assets called #OpsWakeUp21.

In a video and posts released on its social media account, the group said this warning should serve as a “wake-up call for the government of Malaysia” which it has accused of keeping silent over the many data breaches and sales of personal information of citizens in the past few years.

“Your security system is low, all data may be leak [sic]. This can cause unwanted hacker selling all information,” it said in the video addressed to the Malaysian government uploaded at 7pm.

The 2:29-minute video featured a man using wearing the Guy Fawkes mask, a symbol that has been co-opted among others by the global Anonymous movement, shown reading a text off a paper.

A voice was overlaid over the video, believed to be from text-to-speech generator software, and using broken English.

The speech was preceded by a one-minute song, Ain’t No Grave by Los Angeles-based artists Hidden Citizens that specialises in epic-sounding tracks for use in trailer videos.

In its speech, Anonymous Malaysia pointed to the 2017 telecommunications company data hack that affected 46 million mobile users, spam and cyber-scam text messages, and the cyber-attack against the Malaysian Armed Forces’ network last month.

The group said this incident happened because Putrajaya allegedly does not support the developers behind such digital assets, and the developers themselves do not take ownership of their own codes.

It accused the government developers of failing to educate and grow their skills, and unwilling to recognise and learn from their mistakes.

“It had been a long time, we are silent. It’s time open your eyes [sic].

“We are legion, we do not forgive, we do not forget, expect us,” it said.

In 2015, the same group had demanded then prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to resign over issues plaguing his administration with a deadline set for August 29 to coincide with the start of the Bersih 4 rally.

The group had threatened “all-out internet warfare” should Najib remain in power, targeting the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission as well as 150 other websites that would be “strategically selected.”

Election watchdog Bersih 2.0 had then rejected any association with the group, and has urged police to investigate the hacker group’s warning.

Three suspects were then reportedly remanded in Kuala Lumpur following an arrest in Johor Baru, under Section 5 of the Computer Crimes Act 1997 that handles “unauthorised modification of the contents of any computer”.

Anonymous Malaysia had in the same year threatened to blow up the car of then inspector-general of police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, but did not follow through with its threat.

It first came under media spotlight in 2011, when it took down 91 governmental sites including the government’s official portal, after Putrajaya blocked and censored access to websites such as torrent search engine The Pirate Bay.

Anonymous is a decentralised international movement that started around 2003 and 2004, targeting governments, their agencies, and major corporations, usually holding anti-cyber-surveillance and anti-cyber-censorship views. ― Malay Mail

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