Microsoft Web site hacked in Kiwiland

And Chanel defaced in the name of 'TheRegister'

Microsoft's Web site in New Zealand was defaced overnight by hackers who sprayed the site with taunts about the software giants lack of security.

The site was still defaced at lunchtime UK time; instead of information about the software giants' products it was changed to contain a rather different message from the attacker, Prime Suspectz.

He wrote: "Another Micro$oft was hacked? !!Yes!! 'The vulnerability is completely teorical'!! I don't think so!! Security wuz broke'n!"

A copy of the message posted can be seen in full here.

The incident is the latest in a string of embarrassing security gaffes to affect the software giant. Last year, hackers broke into the corporate giant's network and it is believed they were able to see code under development. Further, though less serious attacks against its corporate system followed.

Microsoft's international Web sites, which are often hosted by local firms, also come under attack and the latest incident followed the same pattern as a successful attack in Slovenian last December.

Paul Rogers, a security consultant at MIS Corporate Defence, said: "Hackers defaced the New Zealand site by breaking into an NT using one of a number of holes in IIS. In this case it looks they used the Unicode exploit, which has been behind a flurry of break-ins to sites running IIS web servers that we have seen recently."

Other attacks by Prime Suspectz in the last 24 hours included an attack on www.chryslerjeep.co.uk, which defaced that site with the same message sprayed on Microsoft's New Zealand Web site.

"Chrysler are updating its Web site via SQL Server using remote management tools," said Rogers, who added that this was an insecure method which meant "they could be broken into again".

In a separate attack, Chanel's Web site was defaced by an attacker calling himself 'TheRegister', which we are somewhat concerned may bring our name into repute. After the defacement, a protest about the fur trade which can be seen here, the site was moved from an NT server to a Solaris box running Netscape Enterprise Server.

Whether this remains a temporary move or not is unclear and is obviously not an option for Microsoft New Zealand, which will have to devise other ways to shore up the site's leaky security. ®

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