Hacktivist Group to Halt Cyberattacks on Banks

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A group of hacktivists who have claimed responsibility for a series of cyberattacks on some of the nation's biggest banks is halting its campaign.

The al-Qassam Cyber Fighters said Tuesday it has suspended its operation following the removal from YouTube of one version of a trailer for an anti-Muslim film called "The Innocence of Muslims."

"During the suspension of Operation Ababil, no attack to U.S. banks would take place by al-Qassam cyber fighters," the group wrote in an email.

The al-Qassam group called the takedown "a clear indication of progress and establishment of logic instead of obstinacy," but added it would resume attacks unless roughly a dozen versions of the video remain on YouTube come down as well.

Though the hacktivists praised YouTube for its "wise action," a Web page that displayed the trailer says a user removed the video.

YouTube previously has refused to remove the trailer, which the company has said comports with content guidelines. A YouTube spokeswoman did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

The cessation follows a wave of so-called denial of service attacks that have plagued the websites of at least a dozen banks since September. Some experts have said the al-Qassam group fronts for the Iranian government, although both the group and Iran have denied the charge.

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