4chan Users Crash MPAA Website in Pro-Piracy Protest

The 4chan user group “Anonymous” executed attacks this morning that crashed the websites run by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) and Indian tech firm Aiplex Software. The attacks were made in response to anti-piracy measures taken by both organizations.

4chan users (particularly Anonymous) have been responsible for several attacks against other sites in the past, including Gawker, YouTube () and Twitter (). This time around, they used Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, which overwhelm websites with a flurry of requests that would be harmless if they were coming in reasonable numbers or from just one source.

The attacks were made by at least hundreds (and possibly thousands) or users at once, most of them using a simple application called Low Orbit Ion Cannon (LOIC) — if that doesn’t tell you how geeky this crowd is, we’re not sure what will.

Aiplex was the first target. The managing director admitted a couple of weeks ago that the company uses DDoS attacks of its own on piracy websites such as BitTorrent search engines and trackers when they don’t comply with takedown notices from content owners. Aiplex’s website went down almost immediately after Anonymous began its attacks, so a new, more ambitious target was selected: the MPAA. That too fell to the wrath of the web forum geeks.

Internet () piracy, particularly that conducted over the BitTorrent protocol on sites like The Pirate Bay, has been an issue of concern for the MPAA, the RIAA and other organizations for years now, but while they’ve won small victories along the way, they obviously haven’t quelled the rebellion just yet.


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