Former Anonymous member convicted in attacks against PayPal, MasterCard, Visa and more

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A 22-year-old U.K. man was convicted for his involvement in a series of distributed denial-of-service attacks launched by the hacktivist group Anonymous against PayPal, MasterCard, Visa and other companies in 2010.

Christopher Weatherhead, of Northampton, U.K., was convicted Thursday at London's Southwark Crown Court on one count of conspiracy to impair the operation of computers, contrary to the U.K. Criminal Law Act of 1977, the U.K.'s Crown Prosecution Service said in a blog post.

Weatherhead, who used the online handle "Nerdo," was arrested in January 2011 and was charged in September that same year with computer-related offenses in relation to Anonymous' "Operation Payback" attack campaign. Denial-of-service attacks launched as part of "Operation Payback" originally targeted companies and organizations from the music industry that were involved in combating online piracy. However, the campaign later switched its focus toward PayPal, MasterCard, Visa and other financial companies, because of their decision to stop processing donations or providing other services to Wikileaks.