Porn storm swarms Facebook

Facebook is under a porn attack -- and the digital delinquents known collectively as 'Anonymous' may be behind it.

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Maybe Anonymous wasn’t kidding when it/they announced plans to attack Facebook on November 5.

Multiple sources are now reporting a swarm of porn and other disturbing images filling up news feeds across the social network. Per Sophos researcher (and Naked Security blogger) Graham Cluely, explicit images first started showing up a day or two ago:

The content, which includes explicit hardcore porn images, photoshopped photos of celebrities such as Justin Bieber in sexual situations, pictures of extreme violence and even a photograph of an abused dog, have been distributed via the site - seemingly without the knowledge of users.

As I write this, the cause is officially unknown, though ZDnet blogger Violet Blue attributes it to a virus using some sexually suggestive topic as a lure for Facebookers to click on a malware infested link. It’s not clear if she’s just making an educated guess; nobody from Facebook has commented on this yet.

Cluely notes a similar but smaller attack was reported in September, which he wrote off as a hoax. Now he’s not so sure. Perhaps that was a test run for the big attack now.

The case against Anonymous?

Last July, someone posing as the voice of Anonymous issued a threat to Facebook, saying the group would “kill” the social network on November 5, aka Guy Fawkes Day. I and others wrote that off as the usual hyperbole, if not just an outright prank. The claims made in the YouTube video (now removed) were juvenile and ludicrous – in keeping with many of the Anons’s previous messages. But why target Facebook with so many more deserving targets out there?

Still, the images posted on Facebook over the past few days (Justin Bieber holding a penis instead of a microphone, dead dogs, etc) track closely to the kind of perverse and disgusting stuff you’d find on the 4chan message boards – the primordial ooze from which the Anonymous ‘revolution’ emerged.

The @OpFacebook Twitter account used to rally the troops was last used on November 4. Its final tweet: A call to arms and a link to – yes – a Facebook page. Can you say ‘ironical’? I knew that you could.

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