“Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn”

Categories Society, Technology
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“Some men aren’t looking for anything logical.
They can’t be bought, bullied, reasoned, or negotiated with.
Some men just want to watch the world burn.”
Alfred, Bruce Wayne’s Butler

This is the first quote that came to mind, from the critically acclaimed movie “The Dark Knight”, as I read the maniacal ramblings of Twitter user “Lulzsec”. I urge readers to stop reading this article, open a new tab and go and read some of the posts on this Twitter account as I can guarantee you will be shocked.

Today there was a release of upwards of 62000 email addresses and passwords for accounts associated with such sites as Facebook, Gmail and Paypal. As you can imagine, the panic and pandemonium around these documents has been extraordinary. There are tweets flying around with photos of compromised Facebook accounts and emptied Paypal accounts causing the released documents to be downloaded thousands of times by concerned internet users checking to see if they need to take action.

Lulzsec claims to be a group “of lulzy individuals who feel the drabness of the cyber community is a burden on what matters: fun.”
Their website at http://lulzsecurity.com/ provides all viewers with leaked details and passwords of accounts all across the internet alongside details of top companies internet security networks.

The best analogy I can use to describe Lulzsec is that of an amoral Robin Hood. Lulzsec steals from everyone and gives to everyone, not that any of this anarchical nonsense seems to really benefit anyone except after the hacking of a number of pornographic websites when the email addresses and passwords of several US government officials (.gov emails) were retrieved to much shock and anger amongst the general public.

Lulzsec also claims responsibility for the recent compromise of the PSN network although that is yet to be confirmed. Similarities can be drawn to the ongoing scandal surrounding Wikileaks. In both cases the websites have released sensitive information to the public in an attempt to coerce a large corporation/organisation to bend to their will. Wikileaks released incriminating government documents in order to try and weed alleged corruption out of international politics. Now Lulzsec is hacking and releasing information about major firms in order to make sure these firms treat and protect customers in a more desirable manner. Or so they say.

Descriptions and posts on Lulzsec’s website and twitter account seem to contradict regularly on the motives for their numerous accounts. This could possibly be that Lulzsec is several different people all posting from the same account who have different motives for their so called “cyber pranks” or that the hypothetical PR wing of Lulzsec is trying to drum up public support from numerous sources in order to not always seem like the bad guy.

Whoever or whatever Lulzsec is, it is impossible to predict their next actions. Only a couple of days ago they redirected several thousand phone calls to the call centres of organisations such as the FBI effectively rendering the centres immobilised. It seems Lulzsec is a full incarnation of the persistently PO’ed people of the world who believe they are powerless to what they see as corrupt governments and evil corporations both fuelled by the prevalence of capitalism. This sort of thinking and publicity has given rise to the ideas of Socialism and Anarchism becoming supported on a wider scale than has ever been dreamed of since after the Cold War. Maybe it’s just the dire economic situation that it angering people but it seems some individuals have a very warped view of the world around them and a distorted sense of what is right and what is wrong. What this sort of thinking will lead to is impossible to predict but personally I hope it stays in the depths of the internet where it belongs.

Currently studying Philosophy, Politics and Economics at St Annes College, Oxford University. I have a keen interest in applied economics, food and most types of sport.

One thought on ““Some People Just Want To Watch The World Burn”

  1. At least they are making you aware of the ease with which your security on the internet can be compromised …….. At least they tell you they have done it so that the problem is tackled! They could stay silent and use details to rob you and ruin your life ….. But they don’t, they release it to the general public. It is then the general public that take the information and use it for evil! Lulzsec is not the problem, it is those who take the info released and use it to cause harm, Lulzsec simply highlights internet security issues so that others cant exploit them in the same way and silently steal your money!

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