UN's lax security exposed by password-slurping hacktivists
Login details and email addresses dumped after raid
Hacktivist group TeaMp0isoN has hacked into the website of the United Nations Development Programme, making off with hundreds of email addresses, usernames and plain-text passwords that were later dumped onto Pastebin.
Individuals working for the UNDP, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, UNICEF, the World Health Organisation and other groups were exposed by the hack, which revealed lax password security at the agencies. Some of the accounts appeared to have a blank password and many more have easily guessable login credentials. And storing passwords in plain-text (rather than an encrypted form) is an even bigger mistake, of course.
TeaMp0isoN said that it carried out the attack as a protest against what it sees as corruption at the UN. In particular it is upset with the organisation's handling of the genocide in Rwanda, the break-up of Yugoslavia and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, among other matters.
Security watchers were skeptical of the UN's attempt to downplay the significance of the hack.
Jason Hart, managing director of Cryptocard, commented: “The UN is seen as a symbol for security and trust for many millions of people around the world. Hacking their systems is TeaMp0isoN's way of making a big statement to the outside world.”
“The UN has said that the information exposed is old data, but if you look at the YouTube video released by the hackers on Monday it shows account details and usernames as well as personal email addresses. As we all know, passwords cross personal and professional lives, so these people could well be compromised at work and at home," Hart added.
TeaMp0isoN recently joined forces with Anonymous as part of Operation Robin Hood, which aims to defraud banks by making donations to charities and other worthwhile causes using stolen credit card details.
More security commentary on TeaMp0isoN's antics can be found in a blog post by Sophos here. ®
I like how people are actually taking this seriously instead of treating TeamPoison with the absolute disgust they deserve.
Their skills consist of being able to find some google dorks on a website and use an automated tool to dump a database. I have been reliably informed that they are for the most part between 15 and 18.
Do some research and you will find that not a single "center" of Anonymous seems to have had anything to do with this.
On the other hand, do some research on TeamPoison and you will find a wikipedia article they seem to have written themselves, along with a bunch of self-aggrandizing releases.
They're teenagers looking for attention, not hacktivists.
Do me a favour
This is the same Team Poison that once claimed they didn't target financial institutions or get involved in fraud and money because they would get raided near instantly. Double standards right there, huh?. I'm beginning to wonder if *these* guys are the false flag and not LulzSec because, again they are too brazen, too open and attacking high profile targets.
I don't know what they hope to achieve by doing this, because it won't change a damned thing. Banks will issue charge-backs, charities won't get their money, life will go on. If these guys aren't a false flag then you can rest assured they will get caught and will never be heard from again, especially if the rumours I've heard about attacking systems owned by Mossad are true - what's the point in trying to smash the system when the system will just smash you? Nineteen Eighty-Four springs to mind and I can't believe how people can be so arrogant and smug about something so inherently pointless and unachievable.
Breaking the law and harming innocent people for the sake of "hacktivism". Give me a break. Bunch of arrogant upstarts who don't understand how the world works. For the record I am struggling financially and am most definitely one of the so-called "99%" before you ask - I am not a gazillionaire slave master with a monocle.
What is it with these self centred arrogant tosspots and believeing that they are the only way truth and light, everyone else is corrupt and evil so are fair targets for anything that they get.
Things aren't black and white, sometimes you have to deal with nasty people in the real world, as I'm sure they'd find out, if they knew anything about the UN.
No, the UN isn't perfect, but it's a damn site better than anything else we've got.