At the end of August, hackers part of Team GhostShell published the details of around 1 million accounts stolen from over 100 websites worldwide as part of an operation called Project HellFire. Now, the collective has turned its attention to the world’s top 100 educational institutions in what they call Project WestWind.
“We have set out to raise awareness towards the changes made in today's education, how new laws imposed by politicians affect us, our economy and overall, our way of life,” the hackers explained.
“How far we have ventured from learning valuable skills that would normally help us be prepared in life, to just, simply memorizing large chunks of text in exchange for good grades? How our very own traditions are heard less and less, losing touch with who we truly are? Slowly casting the identities, that our ancestors fought to protect, into exile.”
The list of affected universities includes Harvard, Cambridge, Stanford, Princeton, John Hopkins, Imperial College London, University of Michigan, Tokyo University, University of Wisconsin, University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University, Kyoto University, University of Houston, Linkoping University and New York University.
The University of Edinburgh, University of Maryland, University of British Columbia, University of Texas, University of Colorado, Duke University, Rutgers University, Manchester University, University of Pittsburgh, University of Zurich, University of Florida, University of Berlin, Utrecht University and Osaka University have also been targeted.
However, the list of victims doesn’t end there. It continues with Heidelberg University, Moscow State University, University of Freiburg, Boston University, Texas A&M University, McMaster University, University of Gottingen, Purdue University and many others.
The hackers claim they could have stolen hundreds of thousands of record sets, just as they did last time, but they only published around 120,000 to “keep the leaked information to a minimum.”
Furthermore, they claim that many of the servers they penetrated are highly unsecure, some of them even hosting malware, despite the fact that they store credit card details.