NPR.org Hacked; 'Syrian Electronic Army' Takes Responsibility | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

NPR.org Hacked; 'Syrian Electronic Army' Takes Responsibility

The Two-Way, NPR.org and some of NPR's Twitter accounts were hacked late Monday by an organization that's said to support Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime, as this statement from NPR reports:

"Late Monday evening, several stories on the NPR website were defaced with headlines and text that said 'Syrian Electronic Army Was Here.' Some of these stories were distributed to and appeared on NPR Member Station websites. We have made the necessary corrections to those stories on NPR.org and are continuing to work with our Member Stations. Similar statements were posted on several NPR Twitter accounts. Those Twitter accounts have been addressed. We are closely monitoring the situation."

The problems began around 11 p.m. ET Monday, when the "Syrian Electronic Army" messages started to pop up on The Two-Way and NPR.org. Minutes later, this statement appeared on the SEA's Twitter page:

"We will not say why we attacked @NPR ... They know the reason and that enough #SEA #Syria."

Three more messages appeared on the SEA's Twitter page in the next few hours, including the claim that "5 Twitter accounts for @NPR in addition to their official website was hacked by #SEA... We hope that NPR got our message #Syria."

Another message said "you can ask @deborahamos" for an explanation of the attack. NPR's Deborah Amos has done extensive reporting about the conflict in Syria and in the course of her reports has told of the hard toll the fighting there is taking on the Syrian people. She was among the NPR correspondents singled out when the prestigious Peabody Awards were announced in March. Amos and NPR's Kelly McEvers were lauded for their "detailed reportage, often from dangerous locations." Several of their reports took them into rebel-held territory.

The SEA also posted a screen grab showing an email sent to NPR staff just after midnight by Mark Stencel, NPR's managing editor for digital news. He said: "We are aware that access to our publishing system appears to have been compromised and several stories were hacked. We are taking steps to fix the stories that have been vandalized."

As this story from the Deseret News explains:

"Last month The Washington Post reported that the SEA appeared to have hacked the Human Rights Watch website and Twitter feed. 'All Your reports are FALSE !! Stop lying!!!,' read one entry posted during the assault. The Associated Press reported in March that in addition to gaining temporary control of several BBC Twitter accounts, the SEA previously has targeted both Al-Jazeera and Reuters."

The Guardian has described the SEA as "Syrian regime supporters."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Beyond The Bestsellers: Nancy Pearl Recommends 'Under The Radar' Reads

NPR's go-to books guru has sent host Steve Inskeep a stack of books — titles she thinks deserve more attention than they've been getting. Here are her fiction picks, to kick off your summer reading.
NPR

Census Reveals Universe Of Marine Microbes At Bottom Of The Food Chain

The ocean's tiniest inhabitants — including bacteria, plankton, krill — are food for most everything that swims or floats. Now, scientists have completed a count of this vast and diverse hidden world.
NPR

Congressional Stalemate Threatens To Kill Phone Data Program

Congress continues to debate the USA Patriot Act. A key provision allowing the bulk collection of Americans' phone records expires at the end of the month.
NPR

Mechanical Turk Workers: Secret Cogs In The Internet Marketplace

There are hundreds of thousands of people doing stuff to your Internet experience that you may think is the work of an algorithm. They're working from home doing tiny tasks computers can't quite do.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.