Hacktivist group Anonymous has attacked hundreds of Israeli websites in an operation dubbed #OpIsrael.
Put into action on Monday April 7, the latest step in the campaign has targeted the sites of Israeli ministries and organisations.
In a statement, the group said: “On April 7, 2014, we call upon our brothers and sisters to hack, deface, hijack, database leak, admin takeover, and DNS terminate the Israeli Cyberspace by any means necessary.”
According to the statement, the operation is an act of protest against Israel’s policies, including those against the Palestinian territories.
“The further assault on the people of Gaza, who have been flooded by your sewage, terrorized by your military apparatus, and left to die at the border while waiting for medical attention will NOT be tolerated anymore (…) We will not stop until the police state becomes a free state and Palestine is free.”
The move follows a rumoured cyber attack on the website of Israel’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in March. Hackers coming together under the banner ‘AnonGhost’ claimed to have crashed the site and posted the login details of its users online.
AnonGhost has expressed its support of the Anonymous campaign by posting a video saying the attack will be launched against every possible Israeli website in a show of solidarity for the Palestinian territories.
Anonymous introduced OpIsrael to the public in November 2012 during an Israeli assault on Gaza. During the initial attacks, some 700 Israeli websites, including high-profile government sites such as the Foreign Ministry and the Israeli president’s official website, were taken down.
To round off the operation, Anonymous posted the personal data of 5,000 of the state’s officials online.
Other governmental websites stopped operating for some time after an April 2013 attack, which also took place on the seventh of the month.
A retaliatory attack on OpIsrael saw Israeli hackers allegedly break into its website www.opisrael.com and post pro-Israel content.