Anonymous Hacks Kremlin Amid Putin’s Return

(Ping! Zine) – Russia’s been in the news lately regarding the inauguration of President Vladimir Putin to an unprecedented third term. While many Russian citizens and world commentators have had their say on Putin’s return to power, the online hacking community marked the occasion in its own way.

According to a report from Reuters, members of Anonymous were able to successfully crash, the official domain of the Russian government. Despite the move, the site has since returned online and downtime only persisted for a short time.

“All the relevant departments are taking the necessary measures to counteract (such) attacks,” stated a representative for the the Russian government in the Reuters report. The spokesperson also said the hackers had “failed to achieve their goal.”

Marking the downtime, a posted message from the hacking group read “ – TANGO DOWN” on an Anonymous-affiliated Twitter account.

Putin’s return to the presidency has sparked some controversy. According to a report from the Guardian, the inauguration was met with protests in the streets of Moscow. The Russian leader had previously served in the same capacity from 2000 to 2008 but couldn’t run last time due to consecutive term limits.  However, he was still considered to hold primary power in the country during the last four years, instead serving as the Russian Prime Minister.

As a hacking organization, Anonymous is loosely based and usually operates under political motives. Other recent reports noted that the group had taken responsibility for leaking details belonging to user Twitter accounts. However, the social network has refuted much of those claims, instead arguing that the group had leaked duplicates of already blocked accounts.