Sunday, November 17, 2013
At Least Someone is Pushing Back
The FBI claims that, beginning last December, Anonymous has waged a campaign hacking U.S. government computers.
The hackers exploited a flaw in Adobe Systems Inc's software to launch a rash of electronic break-ins that began last December, the FBI said in a memo seen by Reuters, then left "back doors" to return to many of the machines as recently as last month.
As I have read about this I have wondered what to make of it. Of course hacking into government computers and lifting data is against probably several laws. That makes it a crime. Yet it's a crime with a David versus Goliath aspect along with just a touch of Robin Hood taking down the evil Sheriff of Nottingham.
I'm starting to accept that this whole crime & punishment stuff is really not all it's cracked up to be. I can't say that I approve of what Anonymous is doing but I know that today I can't condemn them either, certainly not on something as flimsy as the FBI's say so. Not after WikiLeaks. Not after the NSA Prism scandal. Not after we embraced CSEC. Not after Five Eyes. No, the only way any surveillance state remains in business is by deception and concealment and that mission starts the moment they open their mouths to 'warn' the public.
Sorry but that's part and parcel of the modern democratic deficit, the rise of the corporatist state. I'm willing to accept that Anonymous may be committing crimes (as defined, conveniently, by the state victim) but I'm not at all sure they're not committing those crimes on my behalf, on behalf of all of us.
And, when it comes right down to it, at least someone is pushing back.