Anonymously fighting for peace


Shortly after Russia declared war on Ukraine, an international hacker organization known as Anonymous declared a cyber war on Russia.  

Anonymous has been hacking and taking down Russian websites and news sources, including RT (a Russian news network) and websites belonging to Gazprom (a Russian gas distribution company) in an effort to stop the Russian government from spreading propaganda and censorship. RT published an article on Feb. 28 that confirmed the reports of ‘Anonymous’ hacking them and claimed that the group posted the message “stop the war” on their website as well as other Russian news outlets.  

“Anonymous has ongoing operations to keep [Russian] government website offline, and to push information to the Russian people so they can be free of Putin’s state censorship machine. We also have ongoing operations to keep the Ukrainian people online as best we can,” an Anonymous Twitter account tweeted 

These attacks are in response to the recent censorship of news sources and information that is being put out in Russia about the conflict with Ukraine. The Russian government is calling this conflict a “special military operation” conducted against threats, and they are controlling the amount of information that Russian citizens are receiving about the war. Recently, Vladimir Putin, the current Russian President, signed a “fake news” law that punishes Russian citizens suspected of spreading information other than what the nation’s government has provided. The law states that anyone found guilty of this will be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison or fined up to 1.5 million rubles, which is equivalent to 14,000 American dollars. 

“I think Putin is only telling the citizens of Russia what he wants them to hear, even if it is not the whole truth. This causes many Russians to support Putin since they do not know what is really happening in Ukraine, only what he is telling them,” Madison Hall, sophomore, said.  

Anonymous’s most recent cyber attack was on Russian TV and streaming services when they aired footage of events in Ukraine that were not covered by mainstream media. The footage showed Russian missile attacks that killed innocent Ukrainian citizens and was accompanied by several messages, including “This war was waged by Putin’s criminal, authoritarian regime on behalf of ordinary Russian citizens. Russians, oppose the genocide in Ukraine!”   

“Russia may be using bombs to drop on innocent people, but Anonymous uses lasers to kill Russian government websites,” an Anonymous Twitter account tweeted. 

While many think that wars are only fought on the frontlines, these recent cyber attacks prove that all types of people are coming together to protect Ukraine and its people.