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Hackers affiliated with ‘anonymous’ claim to take down Iranian websites in support of protests

Hackers affiliated with 'anonymous' claim to take down Iranian websites

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Hacktivists launched a campaign against the Iranian government after a 22-year-old woman died while being held by the state’s “morality police.”

Iranian officials say Masha Amini, who was arrested Tuesday for wearing her hijab incorrectly, died Friday after suffering a heart attack and slipping into a coma.

The death sparked widespread protests in the country by those who blame the government for Amini’s death. Iranian authorities say the demonstrations, which have been violently answered by police, have resulted in the deaths of three people. According to human rights organizations CNNclaim that at least seven people have been killed so far.

In response to the uprising, hackers with ties to the hacking collective “Anonymous” vowed on Tuesday to assist the Iranian people in their struggle.

Since then, several Iranian government and state-affiliated media websites appear to be offline or defaced. An alleged hacker on Twitter with a significant number of following shared screenshots of error messages on sites such as the Iranian Central Bank, indicating that the domains were temporarily unavailable.

The hacker also shared files allegedly stolen from an Iranian news agency, though the

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has not verified the authenticity of the claims.

The Iranian government has so far not responded to the alleged attacks.

Other alleged hacktivists choose to keep the Iranian public online by promoting tools such as VPNs and the Tor Browser to access government-restricted social media sites.

The terms “Anonymous” and “OpIran” were trending topics on Twitter as of Wednesday.

The protests, now entering their fifth day, have led some Iranian women in at least 15 cities to cut their hair and burn their hijabs.

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It remains unclear what effect the hacking campaign will have on the actions of the Iranian government.

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