After taking a break from Sony, the loosely-affiliated hacker group Anonymous is waging cyber attacks against the governments of Iran and the United Arab Emirates. The group has published 10,000 e-mails stolen from the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, available for download via BitTorrent, reports Ars Technica. An Iranian member of Anonymous spoke to Joel Falconer at The Next Web saying "It's near the election’s anniversary. We had to do something," referring to the June 15th anniversary of the 2009 Iranian presidential election. According to reports, the hacking attack went beyond just stolen emails and will continue into the future. Here's a survey of the damage done during OpIran:

  • The emails  According to Ars Technica, the emails "all relate to visa requests made by non-Iranians. The Ministry's website used for making visa applications requires scans of passport pages and other supporting documentation, but limits the size of uploaded images to just 40KB. This in turn leads to many rejections of applications and follow-up e-mail correspondence between applicants and government officials to remedy the problems. As a result, many of the e-mails include large scanned images of passports to provide the information requested." An Anonymous source speaking to the Epoch Times says the release of the files was designed to damage the image of Iran in "both cyber space and the real world."
  • Crashed site  This morning the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was down, most likely due to a distributed-denial-of-service attack. According to the Epoch Times, "Iranian government websites have been under a steady stream of attacks by Anonymous Operations."
  • The U.A.E.  Less is know about the attacks in the Arab Emirates. According to The Independent, "a lone hacker – apparently with links to the group – struck the Dubai government’s system, releasing a 'historic list of former gov.ae email passwords', the domain used by the Arab Emirate."
  • Future attacks  Anonymous members speaking to The Next Web say they're planning DDoS attack on the Iranian government's websites in concert with the anniversary of the Iranian presidential election on June 15. A member of the group tells Digital Trends that a specific target hasn't been announced but there's "always something in the works."

Below, is the flyer The Next Web published created by Anonymous member for OpIran: