05 Nov 2013

Australian Web Sites Hacked by Anonymous Indonesia

Over 170 Australian web sites were allegedly hacked by Anonymous Indonesia following rumors that Australian embassies are used for spying, according to the BBC. Victims were mainly small businesses including a bouncy castle company and a dry cleaner with easy-to-breach web pages.

The hacking group posted the list of vulnerable Australian web sites on its Twitter account. After hacking the web pages, hacktivists posted the message “Stop spying on Indonesia”, and an image of the Guy Fawkes symbol on the Indonesian and Australian flags.

Cyber-attacks come after Indonesia summoned Australia's ambassador amid reports that its Jakarta embassy was part of a US spying network. The allegations were based on a National Security Agency document leaked by former employer Edward Snowden, who received temporary asylum in Russia.

“While [the US and Australia] are not able to confirm or deny past activities, at least they should be able, and I'm making a public expectation here, I think they should be able to say henceforth they are not going to do it anymore,” Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa told the BBC.

“In the absence of assurances that such [spying] activities never took place, then of course we must assume that such activities are taking place, and draw our own conclusion in terms of their view of Indonesia as a partner.”

The spying reports caused anger in Indonesia both online and offline, as the country is one of the key trading partners and allies of Australia.

The Australian government has declined to comment on the reports. Correspondents quoted by the BBC say that Australia and the US are not the only countries leading surveillance and espionage operations against other states.