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    Syrian Electronic Army Tag

    The Syrian Electronic Army claimed credit Thursday for hijacking the Twitter account of the Israel Defense Forces then posting false information from the account. The incident spurred a flurry of confusion and concern after one of the tweets, posted from the hijacked @IDFSpokesperson account, falsely claimed that a rocket attack on a nuclear facility caused a “possible nuclear leak.” No such attack or leak occurred. SEA-IDF-tweet1 Another tweet displayed this pro-Palestinian message. (The tweets have since been deleted but have been saved in screen shots online).

    Business news outlet Forbes confirmed late Friday afternoon that it had been the target of a digital attack, one that appears to have been conducted by the Syrian Electronic Army. The hackers reportedly gained access to the outlet’s publishing platform administration panel and defaced several pages on the Forbes website, and added an article under the headline, “Hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army.”  The SEA temporarily hijacked several Twitter accounts associated with the outlet as well, according to Softpedia. The SEA also claims to have published a database containing over a million records of Forbes users, though the news outlet did not confirm that the data had been posted online, according to recode.net. A statement from Forbes on its Facebook page did meanwhile warn users to change their current passwords, and indicated that the outlet has notified law enforcement of the incident.
    Security message: Forbes.com was targeted in a digital attack and our publishing platform was compromised. Users' email addresses may have been exposed. The passwords were encrypted, but as a precaution, we strongly encourage Forbes readers and contributors to change their passwords on our system, and encourage them to change them on other websites if they use the same password elsewhere. We have notified law enforcement. We take this matter very seriously and apologize to the members of our community for this breach.
    The hacking group posted a handful of tweets from its SEA Twitter account regarding the incident.

    Just before 6:00pm ET on Thursday, the Twitter account of CNN appeared to have been hijacked by the Syrian Electronic Army when the news outlet began posting tweets that read, “Long live #Syria via @Official_SEA16 #SEA” and “Syrian Electronic Army was here… Stop lying… all your reports are fake! via @Official_SEA16 #SEA.” The CNN Public Relations Twitter account posted a message shortly thereafter that read, “Some of our organization's social media accounts were compromised. We have secured those accounts and are working to remedy the issue.” As it turned out, several of CNN’s accounts, including its main Facebook account, the CNN Politics' Facebook account and a number of the outlet’s blogs had also been compromised. Among the other tweets SEA managed to post publicly before control of the account was regained was one that referred to President Obama as “Obama Bin Laden the lord of terror...” Another read, “DON’T FORGET:  Al Qaeda is Al CIA da.  Funded, armed and controlled.” SEA-CNN-hijacked-tweets (screen capture: h/t Mediaite) SEA sent out a series of tweets from its own Twitter account, criticizing CNN’s coverage of the conflict in Syria and accusing the CIA of controlling and funding Al Qaeda.

    (Above image was the message earlier displayed by SEA) The Syrian Electronic Army claims it hacked the website of Vice.com in retaliation for an article published in August, in which the identity of one of SEA’s leaders was alleged. From Softpedia:
    The Syrian Electronic Army has hacked Vice.com and deleted the article titled “Is This the Leader of the Syrian Electronic Army?” They’ve also altered the website so that visitors of vice.com/en_us would be redirected to sea.sy, the hacktivists’ website. “Your website was hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army. This time we just deleted the article that you claimed in it that you exposed “Th3Pro” identity. But you didn’t. You published names of innocent people instead,” the hackers wrote in an article published on Vice.com. The hackers threatened Vice in late August 2013. They claim to have gained access to Vice’s systems two days after the article about the identities of alleged members had been published. However, they say they’ve postponed the attack until now because at the time, Vice was aware of the fact that they might be targeted.
    The hacker group posted a screen shot of the administration panel of Vice’s presumed content management system (CMS) to its Twitter account.

    The Syrian Electronic Army breached the Twitter account of GlobalPost on Monday and claims to have hacked the outlet's website, in retaliation for an article the outlet published about the group earlier this month. Posting from GlobalPost's Twitter account, the pro-Assad hacking group tweeted, "Think twice before you publish untrusted informations[sic] about Syrian Electronic Army.  This time we hacked your website and your Twitter account, the next time you will start searching for new job :)" (Note: the unauthorized tweets related to today's incident have since been deleted from the GlobalPost Twitter account. Screen capture below). SEA-globalpost The group also tweeted an image of GlobalPost's website administration panel from its own Twitter account. Kyle Kim, Deputy Social Media and News Desk Editor for GlobalPost, confirmed the hack. https://twitter.com/kyleykim/status/384719304542785536 https://twitter.com/kyleykim/status/384720368830644224 Kim also cited a GlobalPost article as the reason why the outlet was targeted by the SEA.

    The Syrian Electronic Army seems poised to stir up trouble as the world continues to debate over what to do about Syria. The pro-Assad group of hackers posted this cryptic tweet earlier today. https://twitter.com/Official_SEA16/status/375899857988243456 The group warned last week that it may retaliate using “methods of causing harm”...

    The Syrian Electronic Army is claiming credit for defacing the recruitment website of the US Marines. https://twitter.com/Official_SEA16/status/374427649193439233 Marines.com, which is operated separately from the official Marines website, was changed in the early morning hours on Monday to display a message from the hacker(s).  The message told US...

    Yesterday we reported that the NY Times was subjected to an attack from the Syrian Electronic Army as part of a broader attack on Western media, Syrian Electronic Army: “Media is going down”. It's apparently happening again today. https://twitter.com/nytimes/status/372723123591729152 Here's the image I got when I tried to access it, ironically referencing a prior NY Times story about how it was hacked: NY Times Oops CNN reports:
    As an outage of the New York Times website stretched into its second day Wednesday, evidence continued to mount that it was the result of an attack by the Syrian Electronic Army. The group, loyal to Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad, has been behind multiple attacks on media websites in recent months and, on Twitter, took credit for a sophisticated hack that had hobbled the news site for roughly 20 hours. "The @nytimes attack was going to deliver an anti-war message but our server couldn't last for 3 minutes," the group posted on its Twitter feed at about 9:40 Wednesday morning.

    The Syrian Electronic Army is claiming credit today for hacking content recommendation service Outbrain, which appears to have affected several media outlets that include TIME, CNN and the Washington Post. https://twitter.com/Official_SEA16/status/368038668709019648 Outbrain has confirmed the attack (without mention of SEA). https://twitter.com/Outbrain/status/368044125536272386 The Washington Post also confirmed its disruption this...

    In its latest attack on news outlets, the Syrian Electronic Army hijacked the Twitter account of Thomson Reuters news agency. It started with this tweet late Monday afternoon, which I re-tweeted shortly thereafter in case it disappeared (and it has). https://twitter.com/Liberty_Chick/status/361991625175609345 It was preceded by several other tweets containing political cartoons, which are captured here in screen shots. (Warning, they're not exactly funny). SEA-reuters2a

    A group of hackers attempted to break into the city of Haifa's water system computer network, according to an Israeli security expert. From the AP via ABC News:
    Speaking at a lecture on Saturday in the southern city of Beersheba, Yitzhak Ben Yisrael, Israel's former cyber security adviser, said that a group calling itself "The Syrian Electronic Army" had launched the failed attack two weeks ago.
    The Syrian Electronic Army however, maintains that it succeeded in infiltrating the network, in response to recent Israeli strikes. In an email to Softpedia, the group stated:
    “We would like to announce that in response to the unfair and illegal attacks, taken place by Israel on DATE, SEA has penetrated one of the main infrastructural systems (SCADA) in Haifa and managed to gain access to some sensitive data. Also SEA is now able to cause irrecoverable damages to the Israeli's infrastructural systems,” the hackers said. The breach comes in response to the recent Israeli strike on a Damascus research center. “This message carries a serious caution to the Israeli statesmen. They should know that not receiving a quick reaction to such childish ventures, does not show the Syrian inability in doing so, but it is based on wisdom and humanity considerations. We do not approve of killing civilians and innocent people as this is an Israeli type of solution instead,” they added. “Also an advise to those who left their homelands for many years, dreaming a happy and safe life, deceived by politicians whose deed is much far than their slogans; Do the best to express your objections to Israeli policies, since we do not like to see innocent people getting killed in Texas, US, but this time in Haifa.” To demonstrate their attack, the hackers published a PDF file that contains screenshots of what appear to be SCADA control panels.
    This news also comes on the heels of yet another #OpIsrael campaign, in which a variety of hackers claiming association to the Anonymous collective targeted various Israeli government websites.  Like its predecessor, the recent campaign also largely failed, with little damage to any major websites and only some minor defacements to a number of seemingly random small businesses and organizations. A group of pro-Israel hackers claimed to have recently unmasked several of the individuals behind the latest #OpIsrael attacks.  Given that Anonymous is a leaderless movement, it is entirely possible that the actions of that particular group were a rogue operation conducted while hiding behind the banner of Anonymous.  There is no known association of any of those to the Syrian Electronic Army. Meanwhile, the Syrian Electronic Army has also been busy hijacking the accounts of news outlets, most recently that of ITV News on Friday. While the SEA's selection of targets and its messaging, which usually consists of odd jokes mixed in with pro-Assad political propaganda, may seem like nothing more than "lulz" to some, there is a more serious side to the group's actions.
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