Hacking group Anonymous takes down ISIS websites, social media accounts

Hacking group Anonymous has claimed responsibility for taking down hundreds of social media accounts allegedly linked to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) militants, including some belonging to Malaysians, media reported on Tuesday.

"ISIS, we will hunt you, take down your sites, accounts, emails and expose you," the group warns in a two-minute video posted on YouTube, saying that its campaign targeting the militants under the name #OpISIS is continuing.

Anonymous has published a list of 800 Twitter accounts, Google Plus accounts, recruitment websites, Facebook accounts and email addresses that it had exposed and targeted, the Daily Mirror reported on Monday.

Some of the 11 Facebook accounts revealed were believed to be owned by Malaysians, according to Sin Chew Daily.

The video was Anonymous' second warning in two months against ISIS, which has built up a large social media presence with accounts on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram, BBC reported.

The Islamists, who have seized large swaths of Iraq and Syria, used the Internet as a channel for disseminating propaganda, circulating brutal videos of hostages being killed and as a tool for radicalising and recruiting new members.

Anonymous "declared war" on websites run by ISIS last month after an attack on a magazine's offices in Paris.

Yet the hacking group's efforts did not manage to silence ISIS on the Internet, as the Islamists have recently released a social media guide to help members create accounts that are not easy to detect.

Anonymous is made up of activists and hackers claiming to defend and protect democracy.

"We are Muslims, Christians, Jews, we are hackers, crackers, Hacktivist, phishers, agents, spies, or just the guy from next door," says the voice in Anonymous video.

"Remember the terrorists that are calling themselves Islamic State are not Muslims."

jihongou@sph.com.sg

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 10, 2015, with the headline ''. Print Edition | Subscribe