Incident Response, TDR

DOJ charges three Syrian Electronic Army members

The Department of Justice has charged three against three individuals that the department alleges are part of the Syrian Electronic Army, a hacking group that is supportive of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime.

The individuals, Ahmad Umar Agha, Firas Dardar, and Peter Romar, are charged with several computer hacking-related charges, including access device fraud, unauthorized access to and damage of computers, and unlawful access to stored communications.

Both Dardar and Romar face separate charges related to extortion, money laundering, wire fraud, Syrian Sanctions violations, and unlawful interstate communications.

Romar was arrested by authorities in Germany and the DOJ is seeking extradition. Agha and Dardar are on the Federal Bureau of Investigation's (FBI) Most Wanted list. They are both currently believed to be in Syria.

The hacker group has attacked a number of media outlets and news publications, including The Washington Post, CNN, Forbes, NPR, Time, and, among others.

The group also breached Microsoft, and successfully gained access to documents related to law enforcement inquiries through Microsoft employees' emails. In 2014, the group hacked GoDaddy's marketing company Gigya, and in 2013, attacked the content recommendation service Outbrain through a phishing attack, that redirected readers of numerous publications to SEA-controlled websites.

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