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Wikileaks Supporters Attack MasterCard, Swiss Bank Sites


Wikileaks founder Julian Assange
Hackers today crashed the website of credit card firm MasterCard in apparent retaliation for its blocking of donations to the WikiLeaks website.

MasterCard said it was "experiencing heavy traffic," but spokesman James Issokson said the company would not confirm whether WikiLeaks was involved.

Issokson said MasterCard was trying to restore service today but was not sure how long that would take. The website's technical problems have no impact on consumers using credit cards, he added.

MasterCard is the latest in a string of U.S.-based companies -- including Visa,, PayPal and EveryDNS -- to cut ties to WikiLeaks amid intense U.S. government pressure.

The Swiss post office banking service, PostFinance, also confirmed today that its website was suffering denial of service attacks since it closed the bank account of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

In denial of service attacks, computers across the Internet are harnessed to jam targeted sites with huge amounts of requests for data, knocking them out of commission.

Supporters of Assange are also believed to have targeted the website of the Swedish prosecution agency overnight, blocking access.

Assange is now in custody in Britain, facing extradition to Sweden for questioning over sex charges, which he denies.

compiled from agency reports