During November 2014, the popular hacker group AnonGhost attempted to deface academic websites from around the world.
AnonGhost was established by a famous hacker dubbed Mauritania Attacker. The group has launched many wide-scale cyber campaigns against the U.S., Israel and other countries around the world. The group’s most popular repeat campaign is #OpIsrael, which was relaunched on April 7, 2014 (one year after its inaugural launch), targeting Israeli cyber-space.
Their most recent ongoing campaign is #OpGov, where group members attempt to hack government websites in different countries. In the following image, you can see an example of the group’s intention to hack Jamaican government websites:
The group has also leaked information from databases, such as emails, passwords and personal details.
Targeting Academic Websites
Recently, we noticed that AnonGhost is focusing on academic websites in the U.S., such as Washington University, Olin College of Engineering and Utah State University. On its official Facebook and Twitter accounts, the group announced that they had successfully defaced these American academic websites. In the following images, you can see the group’s post and their tweet regarding Washington University websites:
In the following image, you can see the group’s post on Facebook listing its achievements in hacking government and academic websites:
Defaced Websites as Tools for Future Attacks
It should be noted that cyber researchers have recently warned about new methods used by hacktivist groups to attack users who visit defaced websites, using a malicious link that leads to a Dokta Chef Exploit Kit hosting website. The Dokta Chef EK takes advantage of a recently disclosed vulnerability that allows remote code execution related to the Internet Explorer browser. In the following image, you can see a defaced website with the malicious link (lulz.htm):
#OpIsraelReborn Campaign launched by AnonGhost September 5, 2014
#OpSaveGaza – by the Tunisian AnonGhost July 13, 2014