Thursday, 27 November 2014 in the early Morning so named Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) managed to break in more than 30 popular websites, like: Forbes, Reuters, Ferrari, The Onion, The Independent, Evening Standard, Daily Telegraph, CNBC, Gigya, La Repubblica, The Chicago Tribune, The Guardian, GoDaddy, Al Jazeera, PC World, OK Magazine, NHL, CBC, Chicago Tribune and more others…
The group posted on its Twitter feed, referring to Thursday’s U.S. Thanksgiving holiday: “Happy thanks giving, hope you didn’t miss us! The press: Please don’t pretend #ISIS are civilians. #SEA”
So how they did it?
This was a well planned, long time ago attack. To hack such a great number of websites firstly you need to collect information about their weaknesses. After analyzing the reports that have posted the infected websites, we’ve been brought to the conclusion that SEA got access through administrator accounts using email phishing, through GoDaddy Domain Manager and also through API’s on the Gigya social network.
Through those accounts they managed to send internal phishing mails to other administrators, some of them felt in mesh some of them refused to enter their credentials. Also they managed to add an alert message on the first page after which visitors were redirected to the SEA Logo image hosted on an Image Hosting website.
[quote_box_center]alert(“You’ve been hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army(SEA)”);
And to take advantage of administrators access they started posting false news Articles.
What is phishing and how to avoid it
Phishing – it’s mostly a fraudulent practice of sending emails from the name of reputable companies or from the addresses you mostly use to send and receive emails. This is made with the purpose to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords or credit card numbers.
There are no applications, antiviruses or antimalware solutions against Phishing. There is only you and your brain.
- Do not click on links, download files or open attachments in emails from unknown senders.
- Don’t email personal or financial information, event if you are close with the recipient.
- Beware of links that ask for personal information. Phishing web sites often copy the entire look of a legitimate web site, making it appear authentic. To be safe, call the legitimate enterprise first to see if they really sent that email to you.