Assad loyalists hack BBC Twitter account

The Twitter account belonging to the BBC's weather service was hacked on Thursday, the public broadcaster said. (Reuters)

A group of online activists and hackers siding with the Assad regime infiltrated the Twitter feed account of BBC Weather on Thursday.

The group, known as “Syrian Electronic Army” (SEA), began posting unusual messages on the BBC Weather Twitter feed early afternoon, some tweeps were offensive and others were addressing Syrian and Middle Eastern politics.

One tweet declared: “Long Live #Syria Al-Assad #SEA.”

Soon after, the Syrian Electronic Army said it had hacked the account along with several others.

“@BBCarabicOnline & @BBCWeather & @Bbcradioulster was hacked by Syrian Electronic Army #SEA #Syria,” the group said in a tweet.

The hackers’ tweets have since been removed from the BBC Weather account and replaced by a tweet apologizing to followers.

The account of BBC’s Radio Ulster service, which covers parts of Northern Ireland, also posted a tweet apologizing for abnormal service.

“We are aware that in the past few hours several BBC Twitter accounts have been hacked. We are actively working on this and expect it to be resolved shortly,” a BBC statement said.

The online activist group has previously disrupted the Facebook page of Barack Obama, claimed responsibility for the breach. In addition, the group has recently targeted the website and Twitter account of watchdog organization Human Rights Watch and the Twitter account of French news service France 24.

Previously as well, the Syrian regime’s electronic army attacked the Website of Harvard University and the Facebook page of Al Arabiya English.

Hackers posted a message on Harvard’s website saying “Syrian Electronic Army Were Here “along with a picture of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. The university then described the attack as the work of a “sophisticated individual or group.”

The hackers posted a similar message on the Facebook page of Al Arabiya English on March 26 in addition to comments accusing the channel of involvement in “the destruction of Egypt and Libya” and of working “day and night to broadcast venomous, Brotherhood, Zionist, thoughts, in Egypt and the Arab World.”

The group also accused the channel of paving the way for “NATO’s occupation of Libya and its wealth.”

*Al Arabiya regains control of Facebook page after hacking by ‘Syria’s Electronic Army’
 

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Last Update: Friday, 22 March 2013 KSA 18:34 - GMT 15:34
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