After three suspects tied to the Anonymous "hacktivist" group were arrested on Friday, the Anatolia news agency – based out of Turkey – claims that local authorities have arrested an additional 32 individuals allegedly linked to the notorious international hackers' group. The suspects were apprehended on Sunday after Ankara police conducted raids across a dozen cities on suspicion of "illegally entering the communications system."
The news follows Anonymous' retaliation against the Spanish Police on Saturday with a DDoS attack against the Spanish National Police website. The group claimed in a message that the three arrests on Friday would have little impact on the organization’s continuing hactivist efforts.
“Regardless of how many times you are told, you refuse to understand," the group declared. "There are no leaders of Anonymous. Anonymous is not based on personal distinction. You have not detained three participants of Anonymous. We have no members and we are not a group of any kind. You have, however, detained three civilians expressing themselves.”
“DDoSing is an act of peaceful protest on the Internet,” the group added. “The activity is no different than sitting peacefully in front of a shop denying entry. Just as is the case with traditional forms of protest.”
Last week Anonymous threatened to disrupt the websites of Turkish government agencies involved with implementing optional internet filters starting on August 22. Turkish internet users will have a choice of four filter packages to choose aimed to protect families from inappropriate material (porn, uncensored news etc). In protest against the censorship, the group kept true to its promise and sent DDoS attacks to Turkey's telecommunications authority and other government agencies, blocking access for several hours.
The Anatolia news agency reports that 8 of the 32 individuals arrested were minors under 18 years of age. One alleged Anonymous member was even a lawyer.
Monday Anonymous said that it plans to launch Operation Empire State Rebellion on Tuesday. This campaign will target the Federal Reserve with DDoS attacks while calling for public protests until Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke steps down from his position. The campaign is timed to coincide with Flag Day here in the States (June 14) which commemorates the adoption of the national flag back in 1777.