• Fri
  • Nov 28, 2014
  • Updated: 6:07pm
My Take
PUBLISHED : Saturday, 21 June, 2014, 3:59am
UPDATED : Saturday, 21 June, 2014, 3:59am

Cyberattacks on Hong Kong 'referendum' website and Apple Daily likely to have opposite effect

The people behind the cyberattacks on Occupy Central's mock referendum on political reform and the pan-democratic Apple Daily are not just criminals but idiots.

They don't just break the law; they end up encouraging more people to take part in the voting just to show support and place the editors and owner Jimmy Lai of Apple Daily on the moral high ground. We don't know if they were authorised by mainland authorities, as claimed by their victims, or were freelance nationalist hackers. No matter what, they are hurting the very cause they claim to support. Benny Tai Yiu-ting, co-founder of the Occupy movement, said yesterday that the volume of attacks on popvote.hk, the portal that supports the referendum on the web, was four times higher than usual.

Apple Daily websites in Hong Kong and Taiwan were repeatedly attacked in recent days and crashed completely one time.

There is that old chestnut about not agreeing with your opponents but being obligated to defend their right to express themselves. That especially holds true today. Survey after survey has shown public nomination, which underpins all three plans being voted on in the "referendum", does not have majority support. In fact, Occupy Central seriously compromised itself by throwing out all the other moderate pan-democratic proposals as well as those put forward by groups close to the political establishment.

Apple has given up all pretence of journalistic objectivity. It's not just promoting pan-democratic causes like Occupy's referendum but is effectively inciting the public against the government on all fronts.

But it's a free city. You don't have to support Occupy and Apple to believe they have the right to do what they do. Ultimately the only way to contest their extreme positions is through the court of public opinion. Attacking the referendum portal, for example, just gives Tai and his supporters an excuse to extend the voting by a week. He previously said if fewer than 100,000 people voted, he would have failed and would call it a day. But thanks to the attacks and Beijing's ill-timed white paper, an overwhelming number of referendum voters is now guaranteed.

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321manu
Wow, in the span of 3 sentences, a "rumour" became accepted fact. The mind of a CCP stooge really does work in bizarre ways.
BTW, I love how you guys pretend to speak for the "silent majority". First off, the silent majority is silent precisely because they haven't spoken, so it's completely delusional to pretend that they share your opinion when they haven't actually disclosed what their opinion is yet.
But if you want to know what majority HK opinion might be, you could check out the HK Transition Project constitutional reform survey. It's an actually scientifically valid survey, and not numbers pulled out of their backsides like you guys like to do.
The thing that really makes me laugh, however, is when you guys try to cling to the tide of public opinion when it might (real or imagined) match your own. Don't you remember that you guys are in support of a system specifically designed to prohibit the formal assessment of public opinion? It is just comical when you guys try to lend credence to your position by leaning on public opinion. It's like you guys completely lack understanding of what you actually stand for.
Dai Muff
Abstentions would be fine. Because you miss the point that ANY VOTE is a vote for democratic process. Oh, and the DDoS attack IS still going on. It's just failing. Sorry.
impala
I don't think you have even a remote clue what a DOS attack is. It has nothing to do with penetrating systems, network administrators, malware, understanding network security or any of the other things you waffle about. We are talking about bringing down web servers here, not hacking into a company network.

A DOS attack is simply a brute force hammering with a slightly randomised aspect to bypass the standard safety stops. It is the online equivalent of renting a bulldozer and parking it 'strategically' to block the entry road to place X, Y or Z. It doesn't take much planning, talent nor brains to execute it.

And no, a DOS attack is not something you can orchestrate yourself either. Theoretically, I suppose you could ask (or pay) someone to do it on your behalf, but as long as there is not even one tiny shred of evidence that Apply Daily or Occupy Central has indeed engaged in something like that, your obviously clueless speculations firmly belong in the realm of tin foil hat conspiracy theories.

You are talking straight out of where the sun don't shine, and not for the first time.
blue
mercedes: 321manu totally called you out, and you basically have no rebuttal for it.

Also I don't see him exploding or being mad. In fact he was very rational and coherent.
Dai Muff
Yes we do know these attacks came from the mainland. There are internet organisations that can track this, including one site that shows the attacks and their origins in real time. But you are right. And just wait for the July 1st March. As for the PopVote, even a vote and two abstentions, which is a choice offered, is a vote of confidence in universal suffrage.
321manu
That's a fair point. Having a good turn-out is one thing. Remains to be seen what people actually voted for. That will become clear in short order.
Dai Muff
You people are such clowns. There are sites on the internet where you can watch the cyberattacks happening in real time. And unless Mr Lai is living in mainland China, it is not him.
Dai Muff
I very much enjoyed seeing Mr Ho Lok-sang of Silent Majority on RTHK's The Pulse last week arguing that of course often the government should ignore the "silent majority" he claims to represent.
mymak
The pot calling the kettle black - Apple has given up all pretence of journalistic objectivity.
whymak
Of course Lai Chee Ying should be interrogated as suspect in generating massive denial of service. In any murder case, the spouse is often the primary suspect.
Lai has a beef with the Chinese government. He paid tens of millions to Cardinal Zen, whose uses of the funds were never disclosed. One might rightfully suspect they were used for subversive activities on the mainland. Is this legal under one country two systems?
If they are for charitable and religious purposes, show us the receipts.
Has you ever heard of a single case in the Catholic Church where someone of high profile as Cardinal Zen accepting such huge amount as personal funds? Usual procedure is for the Holy Man to pay administrative expenses to his Diocese or the Holy See in dispensing the funds to charity or whatever. Did Cardinal Zen pocket what is due the Church? Smells fishy to me. So James Lai could very well be the co-conspirator and material witness. By his past behavior and the quality of his publication, Lai is not beyond generating attacks on his own servers. First, let him speak out what he gave the money to Cardinal Zen for.
HK ICAC, where are you in the midst of these potentially money laundering activities? HK is becoming more lawless by the day.

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