Meet Anonymous International, the hackers taking on the Kremlin

Daniil Turovsky writes: Around 10am on 14 August 2014, an unremarkable man walked into a café near Tishinskaya Square in Moscow. He ordered a coffee, sat down, opened up a cheap laptop and launched a few applications: a text editor, an app for encrypted chat, and a browser.

Then, he opened Twitter and wrote: “I’m resigning. I am ashamed of this government’s actions. Forgive me.”

The tweet immediately appeared on prime minister Dmitri Medvedev’s official Twitter account, visible to his 2.5m followers.

Taking a sip of his coffee, he wrote a few more tweets: “I will become a photographer. I’ve dreamed about it for some time”; “Vova [Putin]! You are wrong!”

The tweeter is a member of Anonymous International, better known as Shaltai Boltai (Humpty Dumpty in Russian), arguably the most famous hacker group in the country after claiming responsibility for a series of high-profile leaks.

In the past two years, they’ve gained access to documents detailing the Russian state’s game plan for a supposedly “grassroots” demonstration in Moscow in support of its actions in Crimea; details about how the Kremlin prepared Crimea’s secessionist referendum; and private emails allegedly belonging to Igor Strelkov, who claims he played a key role in organising the pro-Russian insurgency in Donetsk, Ukraine. [Continue reading…]

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