Hacktivism is becoming increasingly popular. More and more people are jumping on the bandwagon of spreading their causes through this unique concept.
What is Hacktivism?
Hacktivism or hactivism can be defined as using computer networks or computers in a subversive manner to spread a personal agenda of a political or social nature. At times, big international organisations and powerful countries pump in large amounts of money just to perpetrate hacktivism. However, some individuals and small establishments choose to do it even without funding.
The Development of Hacktivism
The genesis of Hacktivism is probably the late eighties, nonetheless, it has grown immensely over the years. When it started, it took the form of computer worms and viruses. However, in the nineties, it changed its attacks to denial of service or DoS. As technology continues to advance, hacktivism has taken other various forms and spread to cyber attacks as well. These days most protests and sit-ins are accompanied by a form of hacktivism.
By 2008, the American government was using hacktivism as a means of campaigning during national elections. In 2015, hacking became more personal. However, in 2016 hacktivism was recognised by Congress as a fully fledged means of lobbying. Government organisations were also targeted by hackers and the hacktivism activity increased tremendously. Issues such as fake news also became a form of hacktivism and various establishments and individuals were targeted. The WikiLeaks and the Panama Papers became one of the most famous ways that a hacker can shake the world.
Banks, churches, main media channels and other top organisations were also targeted and top government operations were in danger. Sports organisations like cricket in India and Pakistan were also hacked. Negative hacktivism activity like extortion, hacking of corporations such as LinkedIn and Yahoo and stealing of people's credentials and online robbery, among others, became popular.
Hacktivism groups have also emerged over the years. Some of them include DC Leaks, Anonymous and WikiLeaks. These groups have been instrumental in forming some world policies due to the information that they have leaked. In addition to this, they have also created a lot of impact on global news.