Hacker collective Anonymous claims cyberattack on Iran in support of Mahsa Amini protests

Hacker collective Anonymous claims cyberattack on Iran in support of Mahsa Amini protests
An account affiliated with the Anonymous hacker group shared screenshots showing Iranian government websites taken down after having allegedly been hacked. 
2 min read
21 September, 2022
Hacker collective Anonymous has taken responsibility for an attack on Iranian government websites [Getty]

A Twitter account linked to the Anonymous hacker group claims to have launched cyber attacks against the Iranian government and affiliated websites.

It said the attacks were in support of protests following the death of Mahsa Amini. 

Amini, a 22-year-old from Iran's Kurdistan province, fell into a coma and died after her arrest in Tehran last week by the morality police for not fully covering her hair.

Wearing a hijab in public is compulsory for women under Iranian law.

Videos circulating on social media showed demonstrators protesting her death, demanding an end to Iran's strict religious laws and the abolition of the morality police. Some women took their headscarves off in public.

On social media, men and women have shared footage of themselves shaving their heads in a show of support for Amini.

On Wednesday, an Anonymous-affiliated account shared screenshots showing the websites of Iran’s government portal, the office of a government spokesperson, and the central bank taken down after purportedly being hacked.

Earlier on Tuesday, a video released by the hacker group showed footage of the protests across Iran.

A voice commentary on the video said Amini’s death "was the last straw".

"The Iranian people are not alone. Anonymous will not keep the governments alive on the Internet as long as they fight the dictatorial rule and murderous cops," the commentary added.

Iranian authorities have denied accusations that Amini was beaten or mistreated.

Some of the websites appear to have gone live again before being taken down once again on Wednesday, indicating a struggle between the hackers and the website technicians. 

Human rights groups have reported that at least seven people have died in the protests, all of whom were killed by security forces, while Iranian authorities said there were three deaths.