A team of hackers that have claimed to be from the “Lizard Squad – Official Cyber Caliphate” group have attacked Malaysia Airlines official website. The homepage of the national carrier was showing, for a time, an image of a lizard wearing a tuxedo and a top hat. Officials at Malaysia Airlines has confirmed that their website was compromised but also assured people that customers’ bookings and data were not affected by the hack.
On Monday morning of this week, the website’s main page was replaced by the words “Hacked by Lizard Squad” and “404 – Plane Not Found.” The common error message displayed when a website cannot be loaded is “404 Page not found.” Interestingly when the hack initially occurred, the words “ISIS will prevail” appeared in the browser tab on the page, however that has since disappeared.
It is unclear why Malaysia Airlines in particular has become the target of a hacking attack, or for that matter what connection this hack has to Islamic State, the religious militant group thats sometimes referred to as ISIS, which has declared an Islamic caliphate in areas of Iraq and Syria.
The hacking group Lizard Squad also laid claim, via Twitter, that it would be releasing data from Malaysia Airlines, but the group did not specify in any detail what information they may have.
Malaysia Airlines confirmed in a statement that its “Domain Name System (DNS) has been compromised where users are re-directed to a hacker website”. They said their own web servers were intact and the website itself had not been hacked into.
They added that this temporary glitch does not affect [customer] bookings and user data “remains secured”. Malaysia Airlines added that it would take 22 hours to restore the website. The site has now returned to normal operation.
Malaysia Airlines is still recovering from two recent disasters; the disappearance of MH370 and the shooting down of MH17. In March of 2014, flight MH370 disappeared from radar and is believed to have crashed 1,800km (1,100 miles) off Australia’s west coast. Only a few months later flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine, killing all on board the aircraft.
Lizard Squad have claimed to have disrupted Sony and Microsoft operations over the recent holiday period, with gamers unable to log on to XBox Live and PlayStation platforms for a time.
[Image via decutorgaming]