Feeds

Hackers pwn PBS in revenge for WikiLeaks doco

Tupac and Biggie Smalls fake news LOLZ

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Hackers aligned with WikiLeaks broke into and defaced the website of US broadcaster PBS over the weekend shortly after it had aired a less than flattering documentary about the whistle-blowing site.

LulzSec took particular offence at the portrayal of presumed WikiLeaks source Bradley Manning during of an episode of PBS's Frontline news magazine programme. In response, the hackers broke into PBS website before swiping passwords and other sensitive information.

The hacker pranksters uploaded usernames and hashed passwords for the PBS database administrators and users onto Pastebin.com. Even more embarrassingly, the prankster also posted the logins of PBS local affiliates, including plain-text passwords.

Just so everyone would know the hack had happened, LulzSec also defaced PBS's website, posting a bogus story (cached here) that claimed dead rapper Tupac Shakur was alive and well in and living in the same New Zealand town as nemesis Biggie Smalls. PBS posted a statement on the hack but that was defaced as well with an abusive message posted against Frontline.

Hacks of this type are normally carried out using SQL injection attacks. Flaws in content management systems are also a popular target. However LulzSec said that it had used a zero day exploit in Movable Type 4 on Linux servers running outdated kernels. That in itself would only have allowed LulzSec to deface the PBS website, but the use of the same password across multiple systems within PBS allowed the hackers to pull off a far more deeply penetrative attack.

Since the hack, LulzSec has turned it attention towards patriot hacker Jester, the most prominent member of the anti-Wikileaks cyber-militia, who attacked WikiLeaks after the release of US diplomatic cables. Unsurprisingly, LulzSec claimed his hacks were "lame" before threatening an attack against long-running hacker magazine 2600. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
George Clooney, WikiLeaks' lawyer wife hand out burner phones to wedding guests
Day 4: 'News'-papers STILL rammed with Clooney nuptials
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
PEAK IPV4? Global IPv6 traffic is growing, DDoS dying, says Akamai
First time the cache network has seen drop in use of 32-bit-wide IP addresses
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.