Back on Feb. 7, Anonymous was planning on hacking Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) on Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14. The goal of Operation Goldman Sachs, or #opgm, was to report the Twitter and Facebook accounts controlled by Goldman Sachs as spam and bombard its offices across the world with phone calls. However, on Thursday night, neither the company's Twitter page nor Facebook page appeared to be hacked or shut down last night.
We've reached out to Goldman Sachs to confirm whether or not their social network accounts were hacked, and we will update this story as soon as we receive a response.
The operation's official Tumblr page was heavily modified in the past several days and went from a basic website into a much nicer-looking layout, however no new updates have been made to announce a successful operation. The last post on the website was made on early afternoon Thursday and includes a list of phone numbers in English, Spanish and German.
It seems like the goal wasn’t really to shut down Goldman Sachs’ social networks, but for the group to raise awareness about why it thought Goldman Sachs deserved to be attacked in the first place.
Anonymous operators wrote messages on the Tumblr page in French, which they translated into German and English -- this may indicate the leaders of Operation Goldman Sachs were European. The operation was reportedly focused on hurting Goldman Sachs for the profits the company earned, while various euro zone countries defaulted, as opposed to attacking the company for its involvement in the American real estate crisis, according to the Daily Dot. In addition, Insider Media Group said one of the reasons for the operation was Huw Pill’s interview with the Huffington Post recently.
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Pill, Goldman’s chief economist, suggested France lower wages by a third in order for the country to increase competition in the labor force. Considering the official Operation Goldman Sachs Tumblr page was written in French as well, it's possible the leaders behind this operation are from France.
Operation Goldman Sachs was a little unorthodox for Anonymous, the group responsible for hacking into the Federal Reserve earlier this month. The Daily Dot notes that simply shutting down Goldman Sachs' social network accounts is a little unambitious and would be a weak follow-up to hacking one of the biggest institutions in the U.S.
On Feb. 8, SaudiAnonymous1 posted via Twitter that he started a live Distributed Denial of Service attack, or DDoS, against Goldman Sachs and its website for high-net-worth clients. DDoS uses multiple computers infected with a virus to target and shut down a single system, however the attack hasn’t had an effect on the website, which is still running smoothly.
An operation targeting Goldman Sachs’ valuable clients is something more befitting of Anonymous. At the same time, Anonymous makes many threats it doesn't actually follow through with. For example, the group was allegedly planning to hack the State of the Union address earlier this week but didn't.
It's difficult to determine whether the Goldman Sachs operation was just an empty threat or a minor failure or if Anonymous has something even bigger planned against the company.