'Expect more online attacks' Anonymous hackers say
The hacking group Anonymous says it will launch online attacks every weekend in the wake of allegations it disrupted access to the Home Office website.
Anonymous Twitter messages warned of the attack on 4 April, and said: "EXPECT a DDOS (Distributed Denial of Service) every Saturday on the UK Government sites."
The website became inaccessible around 21:00 BST on Saturday, and was patchy from 05:00 on Sunday.
A distributed denial-of-service (DDo attack floods a webserver with so many requests that it can no longer respond to legitimate users.
One message on Twitter said it was a protest against "draconian surveillance proposals" but another claimed it was over extradition from the UK to the US.
There were also claims on Twitter that the 10 Downing Street website had been targeted as part of the same protest.
This was dismissed by a Downing Street spokesman - but access to Number 10's site was slow and intermittent for a time.
It is not clear whether the protest was against email surveillance or extradition, but it could be both.
One tweet claiming to be from Anonymous said: "You should not give UK citizens to foreign countries without evidence. If an offence happened in the UK, so should the trial."
Last month the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee said major changes were needed to the UK-US extradition treaty to restore "public faith".
The MPs said they believed it was "easier to extradite a British citizen to the USA than vice versa".
Gary McKinnon, who has Asperger's syndrome, has been fighting extradition to the US for 10 years.
Mr McKinnon, of north London, is accused of hacking US military computer systems in 2002.
Chris Tappin, of Orpington, south-east London, was extradited to the US on 24 February over allegations of arms dealing.
It has been claimed he conspired to sell batteries for use in Iranian missiles.
Student Richard O'Dwyer, of Chesterfield, is also fighting extradition on copyright infringement charges on a website he ran from the UK.
Earlier in the week the Home Office said it planned to "legislate as soon as parliamentary time allows" to bring in email surveillance measures.
Ministers say change is needed to help fight crime and terrorism, but critics warn it is an attack on privacy.
After the website was disrupted on Saturday evening a Home Office spokesman said: "We are aware of some reports that the Home Office website may be the subject of an online protest.
This post was modified from its original form on 08 Apr, 6:15