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Conspiracy theories rage as 100 website defacements hit Singapore

Government sites left alone, opposition hit by 'Indonesian' attacker

creative commons - must credit clarence: *www.sxc.hu/profile/clarence

Singapore is on high alert after over 100 local web sites were defaced, including several run by the opposition Reform Party.

A total of 103 sites were hit in an attack on Monday launched from an Indonesian IP address, according to Zone-H, an archive of defaced web sites (h/t TechInAsia).

The majority are now either offline or defaced with the message “Hacked By Mr. AzRooT” and a link to the Twitter profile of user @4zrai, who boasts of other scalps this month including the Italian and Mali governments and Indonesian military.

The “notifier” for the attacks according to Zone-H, however, is a group dubbed “Lopht Crews” of which there is little information online.

As if that weren’t enough for Singapore, the local CERT was forced to issue an alert on Wednesday to hosting providers that 80 sites had been defaced.

“The hosting providers were notified so that they could investigate and take the necessary actions. No government sites were among those affected,” a SingCERT spokesperson said, according to Xinmsn News.

It’s unclear whether any of the sites related to this alert were struck in the attack noted by Zone-H.

Three that definitely were not belonged to the opposition Reform Party of Singapore, which announced the attack on its Facebook page.

Party secretary-general Kenneth Jeyaretnam made the following statement:

The manner in which the website was attacked with our Singapore flag defaced and an 'Indonesian group' taking credit was designed to get the government to act and take us out of circulation. We are not so easily intimidated.

There’s no further info on how the sites were defaced or the motivation of the hackers. Although Singapore is no stranger to this kind of activity, it’s usually directed at the government.

Back in October, for example, an Anonymous-affiliated hacktivist claiming to be called The Messiah hit several government sites in retribution for new regulations seen as restricting press freedom.

The Singaporean government is generally one of the more proactive in South-east Asia when it comes to dealing with the growing number of threats from cyber space.

It passed new laws in January last year allowing it to take action against potential threats before they have a chance to impact critical infrastructure, for example.

However, the SingCERT web site is pretty sparse and has not even been updated since December. ®

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