With all the attention on News Corp (NSDQ: NWS) and the hacking scandal, it was bound to happen: the homepage of The Sun newspaper, The Times, and News International have been hacked by LulzSec. “News International’s DNS servers (link web addresses to servers) and all 1,024 web addresses are down,” the hacking group tweeted on Monday night.
It started earlier this today, when the prankster hacks LulzSec sent out a tweet telling followers, “The Sun’s homepage now redirects to the Murdoch death story on the recently-owned New Times website. Can you spell success, gentlemen?”
Then if you went to the homepage for The Sun, you were shown the Sun’s page for a moment, and then redirected to a Sun page that splashed on the news that Rupert Murdoch had died from a drug overdose, on a page for a site at the URL http://www.new-times.co.uk:
LulzSec also put in a pithy cartoon to illustrate their plan:
Now it looks like the IT folks at The Sun have picked up on the attack and have retaliated by blocking LulzSec’s page. When you try to go to the Sun, you now get an error 403, “Forbidden.”
We’ll update this as we learn more. But this is another example of how, even outside of the legal hot water now surrounding News International, the company is also getting a lot of heat from the public that may have an equally (if not more) damaging effect on the company.
Update: Looks like a cat and mouse game. Now the hacked site is redirecting to LulzSec’s Twitter page.
It also looks like News Corp might start getting the Sony (NYSE: SNE) treatment from LulzSec. This from earlier this evening:
Update 2: Looks like LulzSec is following through on its plan. Now the News International page is down, too. Highly embarrassing.
Update 3: Add The Times to the list, too.
Update 4: The sites are back up now, notes the Guardian, which also points out that LulzSec had managed to also get usernames and passwords for accounts for NI employees during the breach. The company closed down remote access until this morning, and is now prompting all to make new passwords to use the remote services again.