The shadowy online hackers group Anonymous briefly hijacked the French presidential website on Friday, Jan 20, in apparent retaliation for the U.S. shutdown of file-sharing site Megaupload.
The slogan “We Are Legion,” the group’s online rallying cry, was inserted into the navigation bar of the official Elysee site’s (www.elysee.fr).
Before the end of the day, the site had been restored to normal, AFP reported.
The group’s action appeared to be linked to France’s stance on the U.S. clampdown on file-sharing.
French Culture Minister Frederic Mitterrand on Friday denounced those behind the file-sharing site Megaupload.com as delinquents, backing the US decision to shut it down.
“It is delinquency, it is theft,” the minister said in an interview with BFM TV, denouncing what he called the site’s massive violations of copyright law.
“The truth is that they are stealing on a large scale,” he added.
Megaupload, one of the internet’s largest file-sharing sites, was earlier shut down by officials in the U.S., with the site’s founders being charged with violating piracy laws. Federal prosecutors have accused it of costing copyright holders more than $500m in lost revenue. The firm says it was diligent in responding to complaints about pirated material.
In response, Anonymous has targeted the FBI and U.S. Department of Justice websites.