Hackers attack websites of cybersecurity bill backers

Tuesday - 4/10/2012, 9:48am EDT

Hackers attacked the websites of two tech-industry groups that support cybersecurity legislation.

Tech America and USTelecom said the Anonymous hacker group targeted their sites in denial-of-service attacks. Both sites went dark for several hours but are back up now.

The groups support House legislation to encourage information-sharing between the government and the private sector. Tech America President Shawn Osborne called the attack on his site a "strong-arm tactic."

"As an industry in the business of facilitating communications, we respect the right of those calling themselves 'Anonymous' to express their views and engage in lawful political advocacy," USTelecom President and CEO Walter B. McCormick Jr. said in a press release. "But by launching a cyber attack in an effort to coerce, intimidate and stifle speech, members of Anonymous are acting contrary to the very freedoms and Internet norms that they espouse. Ironically, by their actions Anonymous hacktivists underscore the importance of speedy action on the bipartisan Rogers-Ruppersberger legislation to ensure that the Internet remains an open and safe forum for all."

This story is part of Federal News Radio's daily Cybersecurity Update. For more cybersecurity news, click here.