Anonymous targets Texas Republican website after abortion ban

News / Anonymous targets Texas Republican website after abortion ban

Anonymous targets Texas Republican website after abortion ban

The infamous activist hacker organization Anonymous have taken responsibility for a hack which left the Texas Republican website down over the weekend and Monday. 

The attack comes as retaliation for the Texas Heartbeat Act which came into effect on September 1st. The Texas Heartbeat Act is the first six-week abortion ban in the United States, and is extremely controversial and divisive, with mass protesting breaking out in the weeks since arguing the bill is an oppressive violation of a woman’s right to choose. 

Anonymous, who have previously been known to speak out in favor of pro-choice for women, targeted the Texas Republican website, gaining access to it on Saturday. 

While under Anonymous’ control, the site linked to prochoice movements Planned Parenthood and Operation Jane as well as displaying the messages “Republican Party of F*cking Over Women” and "We are committed to taking away all the rights of women so we can live our prosperous, Bible-thumping dream". The site was also filled with random images and links designed to mock the integrity of the Party, such as Pokémon, rickroll links to Rick Astley videos and explicit images. 

The Republican Party began to regain access to the site on Monday, after it had been under Anonymous control for the whole weekend. The site remains mostly non-functional, with all usual links redirecting to a fundraiser that has been set up to ask for public donations following the attack. 

The site currently reads “While the nation paused over the weekend in remembrance of the 20th anniversary of 9/11 the Republican Party of Texas website was hacked” 

“Pro-abortion activists targeted us because of our strong support for the Heartbeat Act. This attack adds to a growing list of actions by the radical left who tries to silence anyone that disagrees with them.” 

The latter part of the statement refers not only to this Anonymous hack but also to the “Texas Right to Life” trolling from early September. Texas Right to Life was a website set up following the initial passing of the anti-abortion Act in order to obtain anonymous tips on women who were getting abortions. However, as previously mentioned, the vast majority of the world outside Texas (even bringing criticism from Joe Biden) deems the act as an oppressive infringement on a woman’s human rights. Subsequently, online activists overloaded the site with troll tips and spam. As a result, the website host abandoned the project and the site has been discontinued.  

The Texas GOP stated that "We plan to ramp up our online security and advocacy efforts in support of the Heartbeat Act. We will not be silenced." 

However, as part of their Operation Jane, Anonymous state they plan to continue to disrupt and attack enforcements of the abortion bans. With the overwhelming support this hack received online it is fair to assume their call to action will pave the way to a series of cyber-attacks, and this hack was just the beginning of large scale pro-choice online activism of this kind.

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