This post has been updated.
Activist groups displeased with Europe's reported Internet monitoring plans and extradition practices claimed to have disabled the websites of Britain's Home Office and Justice Ministry over the weekend.
The loosely assembled collective wielded the same offensive against Justice.gov in January to kill anti-piracy legislation that it condemned as Web censorship.
Some purported hacktivists indicated in tweets that the strikes were payback for the extradition of alleged British hackers to the United States.
Other tweets suggested the motivation was a UK government measure that would allow authorities to track citizens' e-mails, text messages and other online activity.
"TANGO DOWN - http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/ (via @AnonymouSpoon) For your draconian surveillance proposals! Told you to #ExpectUs! #ANONYMOUS #AnonUK," YourAnonNews tweeted Saturday afternoon. "Tango down" is hacker-speak for an attack, typically a denial of service outage, rather than unauthorized entry, that floods website servers with paralyzing, useless traffic.
Later that evening, a tweet stated, "TANGO DOWN #3: http://justice.gov.uk for continued derogation of civil liberties (va @OperationLeakS) #ANONYMOUS #DidYouExpectUsYet? #AnonUK"
The UK sites recovered by Sunday evening.
Sunday night, the same twitter feed was protesting a new U.S. House bill, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or CISPA, that critics say would let the federal government snoop into anyone's e-mails.
"â-º PETITION â-" Save the Internet, #StopCISPA || http://bit.ly/Hju1nI || PLEASE SIGN AND RT!!!," YourAnonNews tweeted.
As of late Monday there were no reports of service interruptions on House.gov websites, but U.S. trade association Tech America has fallen victim. A denial-of-service-attack took out TechAmerica.org on Monday, the association confirmed, pointing to an apparent reprisal by Anonymous for TechAmerica's support of CISPA.
TechAmerica's President Shawn Osborne released a statement, saying:
"We believe the voice of the Internet community is critical to all policy discussions but the conversations need to be based on accurate information. We have thoroughly vetted this bill and see it as an important tool in combatting cyber-attacks, like the one we are experiencing. These types of strong-arm tactics have no place in the critical discussions our country needs to be having about our cybersecurity, they just underscore the importance of them. CISPA is designed to defend against cyberattacks and keep the internet free and open. We will continue to advocate for its passage."