Sotto's website hacked as cybercrime law debate resumes

Posted at 01/08/2013 1:04 AM | Updated as of 01/08/2013 1:52 PM
A screenshot of Senator Tito Sotto's hacked website, titosotto.com, as of 1 a.m. Tuesday. 

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) - Senator Vicente "Tito" Sotto's website was hacked Monday ahead of the Supreme Court oral arguments on the controversial cybercrime law on January 15.

A member of "Anonymous Philippines" who calls himself "#pR.is0n3r" owned up to the hacking.

"It's been a long time, Tito Sen! Deny us our freedom of speech and of expression through R.A. 10175 and we will deny you your cyberspace," the hacker posted on Sotto's website, titosotto.com

"You cannot shut us up, you cannot shut us down. And you shall not see us rest until R.A. 10175 is revised," he added.

"We are all waiting, we are all ready," #pR.is0n3r said.

"We are Anonymous, we are legion," he warned. "We do not forgive and we do not forget. Expect us."

Senate records show that Sotto added the online libel rider in the cybercrime law.

However, he has denied making the "last minute" insertion in his media interviews.

Sotto has also defended the provision that imposes a longer prison term and heftier fines on people who commit criminal libel on the internet.

"Hacktivists" were going after Sotto's website as early as October last year.

However, he only shrugged them off, saying they not worth his time.

He also claimed that his website has a strong firewall.

"Hayaan mo sila, hindi natin pinag-aaksayahan ng oras yang mga yan," Sotto said.

"Iyung firewall ko, medyo matibay. Pero maganda masubukan na iyung nilagay ng mga bata ko," he said.

Fifteen petitions have been filed at the Supreme Court against the Republic Act (RA) No. 10175, also known as the Cybercrime Prevention Act, which President Benigno Aquino has signed into law.

The petitioners who include journalists, lawyers, bloggers, and ordinary internet users, believe that many of the law's provisions are unconstitutional and should be struck down by the high tribunal.

In response, the Supreme Court has issued a 120-day temporary restraining order on the implementation of the law while hearing the case under Associate Justice Roberto Abad.