The FBI is officially investigating the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks that began two months ago. Operation: Payback was carried out by 4Chan's users, who call themselves "Anonymous." The attacks left behind many battered websites belonging to antipiracy and entertainment groups, as well as the US Copyright Office. Some of the smaller ones have yet to recover. The FBI didn't make a public statement, but a "source with knowledge of the probe" told CNET that the bureau may have started probing several weeks ago, and ramped up their investigation after the US Copyright Office website was hit.
Although jail time and fines are a possibility, most attackers functioned behind proxies and botnets. Since drones were doing most of the work, the FBI may have difficulty pinning the attacks on the right people.
Anonymous took down the RIAA and MPAA websites in response to actions taken by antipiracy organizations. The group also targeted others over their antipiracy efforts, including Hustler magazine, Gene Simmons, the UK's BPI, and Aiplex, an Indian company that does antipiracy work for Bollywood studios. Other similar groups in France, Australia, Spain, and elsewhere were also targeted.
Anonymous says it wants to keep all information on the Internet free and available to everyone. In other words, to them, copyright is a form censorship.