Hacktivism was intended to refer to the development and use of technology to foster human rights and the open exchange of information (via Wired). Hacktivism could also be defined as “the nonviolent use of legal and/or illegal digital tools in pursuit of political ends.”
The tools used in Hacktivism include web site defacement, redirects, denial-of-service attacks, information theft, web site parodies, virtual sit-ins, typo-squatting, and virtual sabotage.
The team at SiliconANGLE and Wikibon have been following and reporting on the rise of several significant hacktivist groups over the past year plus. Here is a visual representation of the most recent Hacktivist Timeline, with links and additional references below.