Do you plan to use your Facebook account on Saturday November 5th?
If so, you may want to make other social networking plans for that day.
According to a few rogue members of the Internet vigilante group Anonymous, Facebook will be a definite victim of a DOS (Denial of Service) attack on November 5th, 2011. A DOS attack on a megasite like Facebook would be catastrophic for its users. Why anyone would want to target Facebook with a DOS attack is a subject of much debate.
Currently the world’s most popular social networking website, Facebook claims to have more than 750 million users, 50% of which log in to the site every day. Describing its purpose, Facebook states:
"Facebook's mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected."
The defiant group determined to ruin Facebook doesn’t believe in its benign intentions, however. They posted a video message online announcing their intentions and the reasoning behind the planned DOS attack:
"Attention citizens of the world, we are anonymous. We wish to get your attention hoping you heed the warnings as follows you where medium of communication he'll also be earlier door will be destroyed if you are willing activist or a guy who just wants to protect the freedom of the information they enjoy in the cause and kill face but for the sake of your own privacy face book has been selling information to the government agencies and giving clandestine access to information security firms so that they can spy on people from all around the world some of these so called white audience those experiments are working for a former cherian governments such as those of the gypped and Syria everything you do on Facebook stays on face book regardless of your privacy settings and deleting your account is impossible even if you delete year accounts all your personal info stays on face book and can be recovered at anytime changing the privacy settings to you'll make your face book account more privates is also a delusion face but knows more about you that your family you cannot hide from the reality in which you the people of the INTERNET live in face book is the opposite of the edges etc calls you were not safe from them nor from any governments one day you will look back on the case and realize what we have done here is right thinks for a while and prepare for a day that we all go down in history November fifth twenty eight eleven we are anonymous we are legion we do not forgive we do not forget expect us"
Although the group Anonymous did acknowledge that they were aware of the potential attack, they also did not accept full responsibility for the plan. In response to the video statement, they tweeted:
"To press ... #OpFacebook is just another fake! We don't 'kill' the messenger. That's not our style"
They later added:
"#OpFacebook is being organised by some Anons. This does not necessarily mean that all of #Anonymous agrees with it."
A denial-of-service is just what it sounds like – a website is forced to deny service. This denial is forced by outsiders – either a hacking group (like the one mentioned in this article), or perhaps just one vicious person. The attack is completed by overloading the website with demands – so many that the website cannot respond properly or shuts down (crashes) altogether.
While the world watches and waits to see if the hackers make good on their threat, Facebook has both denied the claims made against them and promised to protect their users. Like most doomsday threats made online, only time will tell if FaceBook will actually be infiltrated and - at the least - temporarily disabled.