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If Anonymous took down the internet on a Saturday, who would notice?

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Malware hits the Mac but is it worth worrying about?
Malware hits the Mac but is it worth worrying about?

A statement appeared this week from the Anonymous group claiming that it had plans to take the internet completely offline for a day at the end of March.

According a statement that appeared on Pastebin, "on March 31st, Anonymous will shut the internet down" in protest at the US's Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA). It said: “In order to shut the internet down, one thing is to be done. Down the 13 root DNS servers of the internet. By cutting these off the internet, nobody will be able to perform a domain name lookup, thus disabling the HTTP internet, which is after all, the most widely used function of the web.

“Remember, this is a protest, we are not trying to 'kill' the internet, we are only temporarily shutting it down where it hurts the most.”

It further detailed how it would carry out the attack, and concluded that it will use static IP addresses and not rely on name server resolution, thus enabling Anonymous to maintain the attack while the internet is down.

“The very fact that nobody will be able to make new requests to use the internet will slow down those who will try to stop the attack. It may only last one hour, maybe more, maybe even a few days. No matter what, it will be global. It will be known,” it said.

This led me to think: could you go a day without the internet? Is it considered a basic human right now? In the cases of the arrests of Jake Davis and Ryan Cleary, they were denied internet access and some would suggest that was taking away a human right.

Data from the Office of National Statistics released this week revealed that almost 42 million adults in the UK had used the internet, while 8.2 million had never used it: the latter represents 16 per cent of the adult population.

So for those eight million, would no internet really affect them? Did the recent website blackout, so publicly supported by the likes of Wikipedia, impact those who were not online daily?

For the rest of the population who are online, best keep that Saturday free for the gardening, as no one will be surfing if the hacktivists get their way.

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