The Sun gets hacked by LulzSec - VIDEO

Filed Under: Law & order, Social networks, Twitter, Video, Vulnerability

LulzSec hacks The SunThe Sun newspaper, the sister publication of the recently extinguished News of the World, has suffered a hacker attack.

In what is even more bad news for Rupert Murdoch's stable of newspapers, already dogged by the phone hacking scandal, the LulzSec hacking gang appears to have breached security on the website of The Sun, Britain's best-selling newspaper.

Visitors to The Sun's home page are instead redirected to LulzSec's Twitter feed where it is bragging about its accomplishments.

Here's a YouTube video by my colleague Paul Ducklin, down in Australia, who woke up to this story - Paul took a moment out of his normal morning routine to take a cheeky look at the hack, and to offer advice to web site operators everywhere:

(Enjoy this video? You can check out more on the SophosLabs YouTube channel and subscribe if you like.)

The LulzSec hacking gang also published a bogus news story claiming (in rather poorly constructed English) that Rupert Murdoch, the head of News Corporation which owns The News of the World and The Sun, had been found dead.

Fake news story claiming that Rupert Murdoch is dead

The false news story claims that 80-year-old Murdoch died after ingesting a "large quantity of palladium", and stumbled into his "famous topiary garden". "Topiary" is a name of a high profile member of the LulzSec hacking gang.

In addition, mobile numbers, email addresses and passwords apparently belonging to News International employees have been published on the internet.

The Sun's report on the arrest of Ryan ClearyThe motivation for LulzSec's hack against The Sun is unclear, but it is possible that the hacking gang is still angry about the newspaper's coverage of the arrest of British teenager Ryan Cleary last month.

Cleary, who newspapers speculated was affiliated with the LulzSec hacking gang, was described by The Sun using words such as "geek", "nerd" and "oddball" in their report of his arrest.

Of course, LulzSec could have done much more harm with their hack. They could have attempted to infect computers visiting The Sun's website with malware, for instance. Nevertheless, their hack is against the law.

At the time of writing, The Sun's website still appears to be suffering problems. Websites belonging to The Times, The Sunday Times, and News International also appear to be experiencing difficulties. It's likely that News International's own IT team have brought down the sites to prevent any further damage being done.

Of course, it's less than a month since LulzSec announced it was calling an end to its hacking activities.

Clearly one has to wonder if LulzSec's attack against Murdoch's newspapers are a one-hit-wonder, or whether they're back for good..

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8 Responses to The Sun gets hacked by LulzSec - VIDEO

  1. jessi · 1540 days ago

    graham, they pretty clearly stated this has to do with the News of the World scandal and the news today-- the dead whistleblower-- is a shot against Anon by the illuminati types... the motivation is clear: Rupert Murdoch is dead

  2. Dom · 1540 days ago

    They have also hacked several other News International websites:

    All of these are now down and it appears that this is an attack at News International rather than just at the Sun. They also used the hashtag #murdochmeltdownmonday on Twitter which also suggests they are targeting the whole company rather than just The Sun itself.

    • jessi · 1540 days ago

      good call dom.. its not just the websites though, their DNS servers are kaput-- these sites simply don't exist anymore from a name-to-IP resolution perpsective.. someone's going to be up late relocating those records!!!

  3. Lloyd · 1540 days ago

    love it

  4. Craig · 1540 days ago

    The thing I find interesting here is the fact that LulzSec appears to still be operational, despite recently declaring that they were disbanding & sailing off into the sunset. Anybody remember that?

    Or am I missing something here...?

  5. Gerard · 1540 days ago

    They were probably disbanding and sailing off into the sunset until the media guttersnipe known as Rupert Murdoch and News International were outed as being hackers themselves, but with what seemed to be government complicity and police protection, (they were after all bribing cops and had agents in central positions in government). So they(LulzSec) decided to give them(News International and Rupert Murdoch) a taste of their own medicine. I don't condone hacking persay, but in this instance, hell slap it up them.

  6. Richard · 1539 days ago

    The missing apostrophe in the headline might have been a slight clue that the story wasn't real.

    On the other hand, it's the Sun; they think grammar is an old lady, and punctuation means turning up on time! :o)

  7. actually like 'Sophos' news, great source to stay updated on web security

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About the author

Graham Cluley runs his own award-winning computer security blog at, and is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and gives computer security presentations. Follow him on Twitter at @gcluley