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<nettime> Canada PM chokes on hacker stunt
Flick Harrison on Wed, 8 Jun 2011 09:32:35 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> Canada PM chokes on hacker stunt

This hacking comes on the heels of an incident in which a Parliamentary page was fired for holding up a "Stop Harper" sign in the Senate during the Throne Speech.  The image of her elegant protest has quickly become iconic in Canada.

The new Conservative majority government faces the first-ever social-democratic Official Opposition in the New Democratic Party (NDP).  It's the most polarized Parliament in Canadian memory: the far-right, social-conservative and well-funded Albertan core of the ruling party squares off against a party who surged to opposition in the last days of the election, with a center of gravity in socialist, french-speaking Quebec and a rugged activist wing with experience on the barricades at g8, g20 and WTO green zones.

Both the pseudo-centrist Liberal Party and the separatist Bloc Quebecois have been decimated in the May elections, putting Canada in volatile, uncharted political territory.

Are communists targeting Harper?	
Hacker causes stir after Harper-choking hoax	
By Daniel Proussalidis, Parliamentary Bureau	


Hacking Harper
Hackers going for bigger trophies, say experts

OTTAWA -  Communist and anarchist activists - the kind that protest G8 summits and meetings of world leaders - might be the inspiration behind a hack of the Conservative Party of Canada's website.

Hours after the governor general read out Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Throne Speech last Friday, an online posting from the Red & Anarchist Action Network - an anarchist and communist group - called on hackers and others to "stop Harper."

Within days, the Conservative Party's website was indeed hacked.

For about a half-hour on Tuesday morning it displayed a hoax message about Harper being airlifted to hospital in Toronto after choking on a hash brown during breakfast with his kids.

The Prime Minister's Office quickly denied the report was true and clarified that Harper was in Ottawa and had walked his kids to school that morning.

Hackers who've gained notoriety from cyber attacks on a Georgia-based FBI affiliate, Sony, Nintendo, and even PBS appear to be behind a the Tuesday morning hack.

A Twitter posting by The Lulz Raft, connected to hackers Lulz Security, takes credit for a "special article" on the site that "may piss off a few of them Canadians."

It's not clear what connection there might be between the hackers and anarchists.

A Conservative Party spokesman added that damage from the online attack was limited.

"This unauthorized access was exclusively on our website, which is hosted by a third party," said Fred DeLorey. "Our database and e-mail systems were not affected. The issue is being resolved."

Keith Murphy, CEO of online security firm Defence Intelligence, says what happened still underlines the risk hackers pose to Canadians.

"Everybody is a potential victim," said Murphy. "If somebody really wants to go after you there's really little you can do. You can do everything properly, take all the necessary measures, and it's still quite possible that you'll become a victim."

Meanwhile, anarchists are just ramping up their anti-Harper efforts.

People's Global Action, which uses the Ottawa offices of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers as its mailing address, is organizing a Friday protest in Ottawa.


* FLICK's WEBSITE & BLOG: http://www.flickharrison.com 

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