Syrian hackers deface Sky Android apps


Syrian hackers deface Sky Android apps

Warwick Ashford

Syrian hackers have defaced several of Sky’s Android apps, forcing the broadcaster to remove them temporarily from the Google Play store.

The hacking group, known as the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA), is believed to be a front for the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Sky is the latest in a growing list of Western media organisations to be targeted by the SEA.

The group previously targeted ITV, the Financial Times,  the Guardian, the  BBC, the Daily Telegraph, France 24 TV, US National Public Radio, CBS News and the Associated Press news agency.

In the latest attack, the SEA also compromised one of Sky’s Twitter accounts, as it has done in most other attacks, but this is the first time apps belonging to a media group have been targeted.

The company's Sky News, Sky Sports News, Sky Sports Football, Sky WiFi, Sky+ and Sky Go apps were all affected, according to the BBC.

The apps’ logos were replaced and their descriptions were altered to read: "Syrian Electronic Army Was Here".

The hackers then posted a message to the firm's @SkyHelp Team Twitter account saying: "Both Sky+, SkyNews Android apps were hacked and replaced, please uninstall the apps".

The attack came just days after Twitter announced it was introducing an optional two-step authentication process to help thwart further attacks.

The security measure requires users to enter a six-digit security code sent to their mobile phones in addition to their password when they sign into Twitter.

The attack on Sky coincided with Israeli newspaper reports that the SEA had attempted to disrupt the water supply in the port city of Haifa.

The reports said that the hackers had intended to damage computers controlling the city's infrastructure earlier this month, possibly in response to Israeli air strikes on Damascus.



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