Anonymous Hacks European Space Agency

 Tim Peake of the European Space Agency, Yuri Malenchenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and Tim Kopra of NASA. (Courtesy of the ESA)
Tim Peake of the European Space Agency, Yuri Malenchenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and Tim Kopra of NASA. (Courtesy of the ESA)

The European Space Agency received an early, unwanted Christmas gift from Anonymous with the group hacking into several ESA subdomains and grabbing 8,000 usernames and passwords.

The hacktivist group posted on Twitter that the attack was conducted “for the Lulz,” meaning just to be disruptive.

Anonymous grabbed and posted online the usernames and passwords of about 8,000 subscribers to the ESA subdomains due.esrin.esa.int, exploration.esa.int, sci.esa.int, according to the Computer Business Review. In addition the group entered the ESA database and took names, email addresses, clear text passwords, office addresses, phone and fax numbers of 52 ESA workers.

Computer Business Review said Anonymous used a blind SQL vulnerability to gain access.

The event took place just before British astronaut Tim Peake took off for the International Space Station.

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