As part of its 'Operation Avenge Assange,' a group supporting Wikileaks called The Anonymous has planned a retributory Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack against Paypal.
Online payment service PayPal suspended the account that Wikileaks used to collect donations on Saturday. In a statement issued on its site PayPal said: PayPal has permanently restricted the account used by WikiLeaks due to a violation of the PayPal Acceptable Use Policy, which states that our payment service cannot be used for any activities that encourage, promote, facilitate or instruct others to engage in illegal activity. We've notified the account holder of this action.
According to a report by the Pandalabsblogs PayPal's blog faced nearly 7 hours of constant attacks resulting in 75 service disruptions and 8 hours of total downtime. The PayPal blog was targeted again by the group on Monday. Post Finance was also targeted with DDoS attack.
At the same time, the Anonymous website itself was also under a DDoS attack.
In a distributed denial of service (DDoS), large numbers of compromised systems, known as a botnet, attack a particular system using a tactic that sends huge traffic to a network causing the target system to shut down.
After attacking the PayPal blog Anonymous organizers released a statement: While we don't have much of an affiliation with WikiLeaks, we fight for the same: we want transparency (in our case in copyright) and we counter censorship.
Apart from using DDoS as a medium to avenge assault on Assange, Operation Avenge Assange has enlisted other means including steps like voting for Assange to be the Time 2010 person of the year, spreading the current leaked cables, usage of social media sites like Facebook and Twitter to vocalize the Wikileaks issue and political lobbying.
PayPal's decision to suspend Wikileaks payments followed similar reprisal from Amazon when it removed Wikileaks from its servers amid pressure from federal lawmakers.
In the ongoing war against Wikileaks, MasterCard also eschewed from providing financial services to the whistle-blower website.
After Wikileaks started posting the controversial dossier of 251,287 U.S. diplomatic cables in November the official Wikileaks site had come under a DDoS attack. A hacker called The Jester, who describes himself as a patriot, took responsibility of the attack stating that Wikileaks' move had endangered the lives of U.S. troops.