In November 2014, 90-year old World War II veteran Arnold Abbott was arrested in Fort Lauderdale, Florida for giving meals to homeless people. And in 2011 the Orlando, Florida Police arrested more than 20 activists who were handing out food to the homeless in a city park. Giving food to the homeless is illegal in both of those Florida cities. In response to the 2011 arrests, the hacker collective known as Anonymous declared war on the city.
Their assault came in the form of so many demands on the city’s tourist information Website that its servers could not keep pace. Called a DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack, this tactic effectively closed down a Web site. Similar DDoS attacks have occurred more frequently in recent years. Some are directed at businesses, but most directed at government websites. Question: Is cyber vigilantism ethically acceptable? Question: Who, if anyone, was harmed, an who, if anyone, is ethically responsible for compensating individuals who might have become the innocent victims of all of this?
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