Ashley Claster reports from Randolph County, North Carolina:
An international hacker group named “Vanda The God” hacked the Randolph County government’s website, according to the county.
The hackers replaced the home page with a vulgar anti-government message.
The investigation is now in the hands of homeland security.
Read more on Spectrum News. The county’s IT department probably shouldn’t assume that the attackers couldn’t have done more had they desired to. “VandaTheGod” has been on a campaign of defacements to spread an anti-government message, as documented in their Twitter account.
Randolph County is only one of dozens of web sites defaced in the past 48 hours as these partial results from yesterday’s records on zone-h reflect:
In its attack on Randolph County — as in its attacks on other governments — VandaTheGod suggested that what they want (at least in part) is more jobs and more hospitals:
— VandaTheGod (@VandaTheGod) July 30, 2019
“corruption turned political culture fuck governments we want more jobs hospitals fuck the police”
But is VandaTheGod’s hacktivism accomplishing anything? It’s certainly costing governments time to restore their sites’ home pages and to secure them better, but has it changed any meaningful behavior by government? We doubt that it has or that it will result in more jobs or more hospitals. But has it impacted the public? Does it raise awareness or encourage activism or political involvement by more people who will join the chorus seeking less corrupt government, more jobs, and more hospitals? Probably not that, either.
DataBreaches.net reached out to VandaTheGod via Twitter to ask if they felt their hacktivism was making a difference and if they ever go beyond just home page defacements, but we’ve received no reply by the time of this publication. If a reply is received, this post will be updated.
Update: I did connect with VandaTheGod, who responded to my question by saying:
I believe the people who see the message open their eyes and see that the governments are corrupt Me (sic) people that society screams for their rights
So VandaTheGod does think the defacements do some good in terms of getting more people to speak up to demand their rights. Or at least, that’s the claim. But is history repeating itself?