Syrian Electronic Army Hijacks WSJ Twitter Accounts

They posted the message “Ira Winkler is a cockroach” on the hacked accounts

By on May 7th, 2014 08:02 GMT

The Syrian Electronic Army has hijacked a total of four Twitter accounts of the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) and has posted a message claiming that Ira Winker is a cockroach. 

The Syrian hacktivists hijacked the WSJ Africa (@wsjafrica), the WSJ Europe (@wsjeurope), the WSJ Vintage (@vsjvintage), and the WSJ.D (@wsjd) Twitter accounts, Poynter reported. They posted the message “@Irawinkler is a cockroach,” along with a picture of Ira Winkler’s head on the body of a cockroach.

WSJ quickly became aware of the incident and removed the tweets.

“We have secured our compromised Twitter accounts and they are now functioning normally,” the media giant noted on Twitter a few hours ago.

While it’s uncertain how the hacktivists hijacked the accounts, judging by previous attacks, they either phished a WSJ employee’s credentials, or they compromised a third-party service from which they were able to post messages.

So why is the Syrian Electronic Army after Winkler? The hackers recently became aware of a presentation made by Winkler, the CEO of Secure Mentem, at the RSA Conference.

In his presentation, the expert detailed the methods used by the hacker group and even identified some of its alleged members. He called the SEA the “cockroaches of the Internet.”

The hackers didn’t like it, so they “defaced” the website of the RSA Conference. They haven’t actually breached the RSA Conference website. Instead, they redirected the site’s visitors to a defacement page after gaining access to a control panel for an analytics tool called Lucky Orange, which is used on the RSA Conference’s website.

“Dear Ira Winkler, Do you think that you are funny? Do you think that you are secure? You are NOT. If there is a cockroach in the internet it would be definitely you,” read the message posted by the hackers on the page to which the site’s visitors were redirected.

The attack was carried out after the conference’s organizers published a video of Winkler’s presentation.

Shortly after the incident, Winkler published a blog post on the Secure Mentem site to explain how the attack was carried out. He called it a “simple and basic” attack.

It’s unlikely that the feud between the security expert and the SEA will end any time soon. Following the latest incident, Winkler has told CNN that the Syrian hacktivists are “imbeciles” and “more ants than cockroaches.”

On the other hand, the SEA says “it’s not over yet.” After targeting the RSA Conference website, they claimed there would be a total of three attacks. If this was the second, then there’s at least one more we should expect.

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WSJ confirms that some of its Twitter accounts have been hacked
   WSJ confirms that some of its Twitter accounts have been hacked