The rogue hacktivist collective Anonymous has claimed credit for hacking and defacing several Federal Trade Commission (FTC) websites in protest of the US government's support of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).
The affected websites include business.ftc.gov and consumer.ftc.gov, and ncpw.gov.
The attackers posted the following satirical anti-ACTA video on the government sites:
Threatpost reports that the FTC issued the following statement on the incidents:
“The Bureau of Consumer Protection’s Business Center website and the partnership site NCPW run by the Federal Trade Commission were hacked earlier today. The FTC takes these malicious acts seriously. The sites have been taken down and will be brought back up when we’re satisfied that any vulnerability has been addressed."
ACTA is a controversial international trade agreement designed to enforce intellectual property rights and combat piracy.
The act is similar legislation proposed in the United states, namely Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA). The bills led to widespread online protest acts in January.
Passage of both pieces of legislation have been delayed in Congress, but that did not stop the Department of Justice from acting decisively against file-sharing service provider Megaupload with multiple international arrests and a shut-down of their operations under charges of copyright infringement.
The indictments led to multiple distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks which were launched against entertainment industry and US government websites by Anonymous supporters in an operation dubbed "OpMegaupload".
The attacks caused disruptions for several websites, including those operated by the Justice Department, the FBI, the US Copyright Office, Universal Music, BMI, and the RIAA.