The Christian crowdfunding site GiveSendGo has been hacked and temporarily disabled after it facilitated the raising of nearly $9 million for the convoy of Canadian truckers who have been protesting vaccine mandates.
The Delaware-based organization, which hosted a crowdfunding effort for the Canadian truckers after crowdfunding site GoFundMe took down their initial fundraiser at the urging of the Canadian government, was disabled Sunday night. Visitors were redirected to the domain GiveSendGone[.]wtf.
The site had raised over $8.7 million in one week after the GoFundMe effort was taken down.
Hackers posted on GiveSendGo a scene from the Disney film “Frozen” as a backdrop along with a statement blasting the website and the protest movement known as the "Freedom Convoy," according to The Daily Dot's Mikael Thalen.
The statement alleged that those who had contributed to the fundraiser were the same ones who had “helped fund the January 6 insurrection in the U.S.” and had “helped fund an insurrection in Ottawa.”
“On behalf of sane people worldwide who wish to continue living in a democracy, I am now telling you that GiveSendGo itself is frozen,” the statement continued.
As of Monday, the GiveSendGo website yields a blank white page that reads, “Application under maintenance we will be back very soon.” Similarly, a 404 error message appears on the GiveSendGo “Adopt a Trucker” fundraising page.
GiveSendGo’s list of donors, approximately 92,000 of them, was also leaked and shared online.
The Ontario Superior Court of Justice issued an order last week halting access to funds that had been raised on the crowdfunding site.
The crowdfunding site tweeted Saturday: “The funds from the Freedom Convoy are not frozen contrary to what you might be hearing on the news. GiveSendGo is working with many different campaign organizers to find the most effective legal ways to continue funds flowing.”
The site stated on Feb. 10 in response to previous Canadian court efforts to halt the funds that the Canadian government “has absolutely ZERO jurisdiction over how we manage our funds here” and that all the donations “flow directly to the recipients of those campaigns, not least of which is The Freedom Convoy campaign.”
The site’s hacking and the judicial moves against the company came amid Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s convening with government officials to discuss how to deal with ongoing protests. The protests began in late January when thousands of truckers traversed across the country and descended on Ottawa, Canada’s capital city.
Many truckers had previously stated that they would not leave until the country’s COVID-19 mandates are dropped or Trudeau resigns. The convoy in Canada has garnered worldwide attention, and similar convoys have been seen in Australia and throughout Europe.
Trudeau is expected to invoke the Emergencies Act to give the government additional powers, according to the CBC. Thus far, there are no plans to deploy the military.
Truckers have also protested at a number of border crossings, notably in Coutts, Alberta, and at the Ambassador Bridge, which connects Ontario and the U.S. state of Michigan. The Ambassador Bridge carries approximately 30% of the annual trade between Michigan and Canada.
According to the Michigan Department of Treasury, it’s estimated that around 10,000 commercial trucks and $325 million in goods cross the bridge every day. The bridge was fully reopened Sunday night after seven days of blockade.
Just before midnight Sunday, the Detroit International Bridge Company announced that the Ambassador Bridge was “now fully open allowing the free flow of commerce between the Canada and US economies once again.”
Due to the nationwide outcry, in the past week, some Canadian provinces have announced that they will set plans in motion to drop some or all of their COVID restrictions, among them Alberta, Quebec, Saskatchewan and Prince Edward Island.