Some members or supporters of hacker collective Anonymous could be planning a massive cyber attack against Facebook on November 5, known as Guy Fawkes Night.
The world's largest social network is the target of an alleged attack planned by Anonymous, according to a video clip posted on YouTube on July 16, announcing a plan to "kill" Facebook for the sake of privacy on Guy Fawkes Night.
Known as Guy Fawkes Day, Nov. 5 commemorates the day Fawkes, a member of the Gunpowder Plot, was arrested in 1605 while guarding explosives beneath the British House of Lords in attempt to kill politicians.Guy Fawkes Day is an annual public day of thanksgiving for the failure of the plot and survival of King James I.
Fawkes has become a symbol to activists and those who oppose authority.
As a symbol for the group, Anonymous has adopted the Guy Fawkes mask, shown in "V for Vendetta."
"Your medium of communication you all so dearly adore will be destroyed," according to the speaker claiming to be part of anonymous. "If you are a willing hacktivist or a guy who just wants to protect the freedom of information then join the cause and kill Facebook for the sake of your own privacy."
The manifesto accuses the social network of selling users' private information to government agencies and security firms, saying that Facebook's privacy settings are only a "delusion" because people's personal information stays on Facebook even after an account is deleted.
"The riots are underway. It is not a battle over the future of privacy and publicity. It is a battle for choice and informed consent," says the group.
"It's unfolding because people are being raped, tickled, molested, and confused into doing things where they don't understand the consequences. Facebook keeps saying that it gives users choices, but that is completely false. It gives users the illusion of and hides the details away from them 'for their own good' while they then make millions off of you. When a service is 'free,' it really means they're making money off of you and your information."
Because Anonymous has a loose structure with no central authority or spokesperson representing the group, the identity behind the threatening statement remains ambiguous. The hackers also own a dozen Twitter and YouTube accounts, making it difficult to track their activities.
Denials of the attack plan were made through several Twitter accounts that are widely believed to belong to actual Anonymous members.
"TO PRESS: MEDIAS OF THE WORLD... STOP LYING! #OpFacebook is just ANOTHER FAKE! WE DONT "KILL" THE MESSENGER. THAT'S NOT OUR STYLE #Anonymous," tweeted @anonops this morning.
"Sabu," the alleged leader of the hacker group Anonymous followed the twitter thread by saying,
"ATTN Media: Don't get trolled by trolls pushing for #opFacebook. It simply does not exist. Even if we get 100,000,000 people to delete accts."
Later, AnonOps said in a Twitter feed,
"#OpFacebook is being organised by some Anons. This does not necessarily mean that all of #Anonymous agrees with it."
Facebook hasn't yet responded to the hackers' claims.