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Anonymous threatens Facebook and Zynga attack on Guy Fawkes Day

Yesterday, Anonymous posted a video on YouTube warning Zynga and Facebook of an impending attack to be launched on 5 November. The focus of the hacker group's ire is the social games developer Zynga, whose recent downsizing of its 3,000-strong workforce by 5 per cent is the instigating factor.

The operation, dubbed maZYNGA, will consist of the shutting down of Facebook - the platform on which Zynga games are hosted - and the distribution of previously obtained Zynga game codes for free.

Zynga’s plans for companywide layoffs (opens in new tab) came in response to poor quarterly performance (opens in new tab) that saw it post a loss of $52.7 million (£32.8 million). Company CEO Mark Pincus explained to staff in a memo that the downsizing was required to “streamline our operations, focus our resources on our most strategic opportunities, and invest in our future.”

Anonymous has berated this policy, as it believes it to be unnecessary, asserting that Zynga is sitting on large stores of cash. The collective claims that it also obtained documents that outline the firm's plans to increase outsourcing to Bangalore, India.

"During the last few days anonymous has been targeting Zynga for the outrageous treatment of their employees and their actions against many developers. We have come to believe that this actions of Zynga will result in massive layoff of a thousand people and legal actions against everyone that speaks to the public about this plan," Anonymous said, according to a transcript of the YouTube video posted to the AnonNews forum (opens in new tab).

"It will also come to end of the US game market as we know it as all this jobs will be replaced in other more convenient financial countries. With a billion dollars cash sitting in a bank we do believe that such actions are an insult to the population and the behaviour of corporations like Zynga must change. Anonymous could not allow this to happen so it's starting to release confidential documents we have leaked on this plan. As we speak we are planning to release also all the games we've taken from their servers for free. That being said we will stop the idea of the distribution of such games if Zynga will cease immediately the plan," the collective warned.