back to article Hacked Sun site greatly exaggerates Murdoch's death

Hackers breached the security of Rupert Murdoch's Sun website and briefly redirected many visitors to a hoax article falsely claiming the tabloid media tycoon had been found dead in his garden. The hack caused many people visiting thesun.co.uk to instead reach www.new-times.co.uk/sun/, which contained a story headlined "Media …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I landed

    I landed on the real website and wasn't sure if it was serious, a person with a nipple on their foot and a house of hell. Seriously, can't we use the sun as a way of finding people to put down?

    1. Alien Doctor 1.1
      Gimp

      ID clarification needed, facial error detected

      "a person with a nipple on their foot and a house of hell"

      Wasn't that Max Moseley?

      1. Alien Doctor 1.1
        WTF?

        How odd

        I posted my reply to AC 23:46 @ 01:22 BST and it was published - that makes me wonder: who are the hobbits that man/woman/creature the ElReg comments desk after working hours? Spooky as fuck.

        Are they the ones that come round and inject me with things after I've nodded-off? Are they the gremlins that put the noodles into my server boxes that I find sometimes? Is this all a Friday-night cider dream and tomorrow will be bright, sunny, warm and I'll wake up next to Col. Samantha Carter (more than likely it would be Rodney).

        1. nyelvmark
          Unhappy

          Hobbits

          >> who are the hobbits that man/woman/creature the ElReg comments desk after working hours? Spooky as fuck.

          I fear the ruthless media barons who control El Reg may have cut costs by replacing our never-to-be-forgotten moderatrix* with a moderatorbot.

          *It'll come to me in a minute.

        2. Sonny Jim

          Re: How odd

          The Reg have offices in San Francisco if memory serves.

    2. Tom 7 Silver badge

      finding people to put down

      that'll be you first then?

      1. Horned-Devil
        IT Angle

        Outsourced

        I suspect (although the people moderating this will know for sure!) that a number of websites outsource the moderation of their discussion boards in the same manner as call centers.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Happy

      In place of the "put down"

      May I suggest just providing free gifts with each paper, in the form of fizzy drinks or self-tan samples which contain drugs that cause sterility.

      Your could probably write the known effects on the packaging, just to ensure you don't catch anyone with a functioning brain by mistake.

      In ~20 years the country would be significantly smarter.

      1. nyelvmark

        In ~20 years the country would be significantly smarter.

        Sounds like a good plan, but - do you you know Douglas Adams' story about the telephone hygienists?

  2. Chris Hatfield
    Trollface

    title

    Problem, Murdoch?

  3. Anomalous Cowturd
    Mushroom

    Hmm, www.thesun.co.uk isn't loading right now.

    OpenDNS reports: The computers that run www.thesun.co.uk are having some trouble. Usually this is just a temporary problem, so you might want to try again in a few minutes.

    Couldn't happen to a nicer steaming pile of crap!

    1. Thomas 4

      You are incorrect in this regard

      It could indeed happen to a nicer pile of crap - The Daily Mail.

      Perhaps a fake news story endorsing the health benefits of crack cocaine, or a review of Manhunt 2 written by a 6 year old?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Tango Down!

    Or so it seams at the time of writing...

    Fail? you bet, but in a much broader sense.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Title

    They're certainly living up to their name... "Lulz" indeed.

    On a serious note, working as I do in the security field, I find their antics to be both hilarious and also rewarding. Now I just have to say "Do you want us to be the next Sony / CIA / The Sun..?" to justify getting budget for anything remotely security-related, whereas in the past it was almost impossible to convince the non-techies who run my company to invest in security.

    Long may this continue!

    1. OziWan
      Happy

      Re: Title

      You do realise that they are after the security industry and not the sites per-se I hope :).

      1. Alien Doctor 1.1

        bofh?

        I think he/she knew exactl what they were after - an increased budget for beer and robot building equipment.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

        @I somehow doubt

        "these morons have just destroyed a ton of potential evidence against Murdoch and his empire: anything incriminating in the email servers can just be blamed on these hackers."

        Oh come on!

        (1) You seriously think NI have not been purging their own servers, etc, since this all started to happen a few years ago?

        (2) If they had not purged so far, what about off-site backups?

        1. Woodgar

          @@I somehow doubt

          I think the point was, that they now have plausible deniability, in that they can claim that some outside agency planted incriminating evidence on their servers and hacked the logs to make it look like old data.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        WTF?

        @Edward Kenworthy

        Thanks for telling me what my job doesn't entail... you clearly know more than me about what I do (or don't do) as a career.

        The point I was making, which you seem to have either missed or chosen to ignore, is that high profile cases such as this work in my favour by making it easier for me to get budgets which were previously allocated to other projects.

        When talking in a work-related context - which hopefully you had noticed I was doing - I couldn't care less about the falling of Murdoch's empire, as it has no real relevance on my day-to-day work. But I have been using his company's misfortune as a real life example of what can happen to other high-profile companies... I would be stupid not to.

        As you appear to know so much about my career, you're already aware that I work for a company that is as prevalent within British society as News Corp is. I don't claim to know whether any of my colleagues have done anything as morally dubious as Murdoch's employees - I sincerely hope not, but I have no way of knowing that.

  6. ao7
    Meh

    Sun

    Can't see this as positive, at all.

    No one else's business what newspaper or news/sport/entertainment/comic I choose to look at. A few dozen people imposing their will on a few million, very unpleasant.

    Don't like the state or little groups (not so keen on big groups either) restricting access to media and communication.

    1. Steven Roper
      Joke

      Normally I'd agree with you

      but The Sun doesn't qualify as "media and communication." ;)

    2. wim
      WTF?

      with a few dozen people

      I guess you mean Murdoch and his merry band ?

      indeed it is frightening to see how they can decide what you can look at.

    3. CASIOMS-8V

      i thought

      > A few dozen people imposing their will on a few million, very unpleasant.

      You were talking about the News International board of directors there.

      1. expat jan
        Facepalm

        Mind control...

        Derr. So you think NI is somehow hypnotising millions of NI newspaper purchasers to CHOOSE to spend their money and DECIDE to buy a NI paper, then read from it? Or these Sky customers are hypnotised to CHOOSE to buy a Sky box and then choose to subscribe to channels.

        I CHOSE never to buy, or even read, the NOTW. I CHOOSE to have a Sky box. At least that way, I can watch US cable TV, which is not censored by leftist so-called impartialtity laws.

        Now the real broadcaster imposed without choice on its viewers/listeners/readers is the BBC.

        Forceably paid for out of citizen's wages, who have little say on the bias, or on what the large amount of money raised is spent.

        The BBC is the real scandal, not NI.

        1. Shakje

          FailTroll

          Indeed.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          You could always

          Not watch TV and then you don't have to pay for a TV license. A shocking idea I know but give it a try and you might find you enjoy life more.

  7. nozafc
    Thumb Up

    Karma

    Karma is a wonderful thing. The hackers become the hackees. Allegedly they have emails and other goodies to release as well

    It seems NI went scorched earth and took down every single NI UK based website

  8. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Even The Sun Manages Better Grammar

    Obviously bogus - the missing possessive apostrophe is a dead give away. Unless there's more than one mogul being found dead that is. One lives in hope!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      I don't think the validity of the story is important.

      The success comes in the fact that they hacked a major NI paper.

      Just for the lulz.

    2. Studley

      Actually

      Given the journalistic quality of The Sun, surely the missing apostrophe is an attempt to add authenticity?

    3. The Fuzzy Wotnot
      Pint

      Indeed

      The NI hacks might manage better but would your average Sun reader even notice?

  9. heyrick Silver badge
    Happy

    I shouldn't be supporting "cybercriminals", but...

    Brilliant pwn.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yo ho ho

    all aboard the louise boat

    1. Alien Doctor 1.1

      All-female band?

      How is Ms. Boat these days?

  11. Peter Murphy
    Mushroom

    Lulz? This goes beyond lulz.

    The episode gave me a schadenfreudengasm.

    (Props to John Oliver for that neologism.)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      @Peter Murphy

      'Fuckyoulogy' is another one of his. For when Murdoch does actually go.

  12. TeeCee Gold badge
    WTF?

    Publishing complete bollocks in The Sun?

    So Lulzsec have sunk to the level of NI hacks then?

  13. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Obviously a hoax stage-managed by News International...

    ... to distract us from the more interesting things happening today.

    Who reads The Sun anyway? I thought most of it's purchasers bought it for the pictures?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Yes and no

      It's bought for pictures by people that will have forgotten what's on the front page by the time they reach the sports section. Having said that, I heard from people in the betting business that the sports section is worth suffering the rest of the paper, but that was a few years ago (no, I don't bet - I just come across many interesting people).

      1. Baskitcaise
        Paris Hilton

        RE:Yes and no

        "no, I don't bet - I just come across many interesting people"

        As opposed to the average Sun reader where it would be page 3?

        Paris, need I say more?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Pint

    They've done a lot more than that

    At this point the DNS servers ns0 and ns1.newsint.co.uk are down and domains including times.co.uk, sunday-times.co.uk, newsinternational.co.uk, thesun.co.uk, and rupertmurdoch.co.uk do not resolve. Even when they do, the servers are just responding with errors.

  15. DomS

    Not just The Sun

    They have also taken down the website the Times - times.co.uk, and two other News International websites newsint.co.uk and newsinternational.co.uk. At least at the time of writing this comment..

    1. mfraz

      Website

      times.co.uk isn't the website of the newspaper it is thetimes.co.uk. times.co.uk is owned by Giant Games Ltd.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Would love to test this myself...

    ...but don't want to accidentally see The Sun's website.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    We hereby challenge...?

    Pompous pseuds.

  18. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. BorkedAgain
      Facepalm

      You think?

      I don't know if I'd be all that convinced that incriminating emails on a mail server had been planted by someone hacking a CMS (or whatever got hacked) probably located on different servers in a different datacentre, possibly on a different continent.

      Mind you, I'm no judge. Who knows what they'll believe...

    2. Reg Blank
      Boffin

      If...

      ...a multinational organisation like News Corp doesn't have off-site backups and archiving then the whole lot of them should be confined to a child-safe playroom for their own protection, because they are surely too retarded to be trusted around open power sockets, sharp edges and stairs, and small objects they may choke to death on.

      Putting my lame attempts at claiming the News Corp executives are a bunch of retarded babies aside, I can guarantee that they do have a clean copy of all emails, because they'd be royally screwed if they didn't. They are legally required by multiple laws, regulations and acts in both the UK and US (given News Corp spans both jurisdictions) to preserve such information and present this information to authorities or the courts when ordered to do so by a court order.

      The argument "Lulzsec ate my homework" isn't going to prevent serious repercussions if they haven't complied with such data retention laws.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Go

    C'mon, stop kicking them when they are down...

    ...use a spade instead...that way you can dig the hole and bury them.

    I hate "hacking" when it exposes innocents to risk, but in this case, they are saving the "innocents" from themselves....

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    CMS compromised?

    I had a look when www.thesun.co.uk was redirecting to the lulzsec twitter feed to see how it was doing it.

    The homepage was loading another page into an iframe from here :

    http://extras.thesun.co.uk/sol/breakingnewspage.html

    This page is currently unavailable, but i dumped the source here: http://pastebin.com/Em4w7Cxw

    The twitter redirect was done with javascript, and it looks like access to The Sun's CMS would have been needed to insert this script

  21. John I'm only dancing
    Trollface

    Living dead

    I thought Murdoch was a zombie, out to get the rest of us, which makes the Lulz' story true.

    Best approximation of a zombie

  22. Chris Miller

    Times site back

    at 08:15GMT.

    BTW times.co.uk is not a NewsInt site, that would be thetimes.co.uk

  23. Brett 1
    FAIL

    DNS

    Well both of news internationals are within a single network so it wouldn't take a huge effort to take down the whole lot :)

  24. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    @Edward Kenworthy

    You daft bugger ... they can prove it was real by checking whether the email is present in previous backups ... sheesh!

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  25. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Call me paranoid..

    But... is this whole event stage managed by NI? the timing and plausible deniability it generates for NI is astounding...

  26. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Thomas 4

      Huh?

      You mean seppuku?

      1. andy, bacup

        Not seppuku:

        drowning his irritating a-hole of a son.

  27. frank ly
    Happy

    Early Critical Commentary

    On a lighter but related note: Have a listen to (by purchasing it), the 1994 'Happiness' album, by Roger Taylor (was the Queen drummer). It has a track called 'Dear Mr Murdoch'; which gave me lulz.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Happy

      Even earlier reference

      I believe the 1977 Queen album 'News of the World' was given it's name after the Queen members had a run-in with NotW reporters. Not their favourite people.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So the Sun website had a fake story on the front?

    How are we supposed to tell the difference?

  29. Frederic Bloggs
    Pirate

    Palladium?

    Methinks the Lulz were thinking of something a lot more toxic such as polonium.

    1. Thomas 4

      Not necessarily

      Swallowing large chunks of a London theatre can often prove fatal.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    outsourced security

    As El Reg reported in 2010, most IT infrastructure & services are now outsourced to HCL in India, I suspect that Lulz would have found it too much of a challenge...

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/04/09/news_int_email/

    - maybe their email servers crashed due to excessive deletion from the backups ;)

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    @Bloggs, Palladium?

    I don't know, have you seen how many books there are for Rifts? Ingesting those is bound to cause some problems. (Never mind the awfulness of the rules system).

    I'll get me coat. It's the one with the pockets full of funny shaped dice.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Facepalm

    It was immediately seen as a hoax. Why?

    Because of the crappy sub-editing. People in the media industry spot fakes like this in an instant. The Sun would've at least sub-edited the article properly, gotten "moguls" right as "mogul's", and other spelling mistakes in the article.

    Sorry. :-)

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