Breach, Data Security, Vulnerability Management

Syrian Electronic Army targets VoIP app Viber in latest attack

The Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) is continuing to knock off targets.

The hacker group took credit via Twitter on Tuesday with defacing the website of messaging and VoIP mobile app provider Viber, additionally warning users to delete the service because it is being used for spying and tracking.

In a statement, Viber officials said the website was defaced because a Viber employee fell victim to an email phish and that allowed access to two "minor" systems: a customer support panel and a support administration system. 

Viber officials emphasized that no sensitive user data was exposed and that its databases were not hacked. The company explained that private information is kept secure and cannot be accessed by this type of attack. The Viber website seemed to be functioning normally as of 3:30 p.m. EST. The company also denied the assertions over users' privacy.

The SEA struck previously had struck on Friday, when it breached the website for mobile messaging app Tango. The collective said on Twitter that it collected 1.5 terabytes of information, comprising millions of the app users' “phone numbers and contacts and their emails.” Tango is said to have more than 120 million users across the globe.

It was reported that the SEA was able to access the Tango website because it was using an outdated version of web publishing tool WordPress. The SEA previously compromised more than a million accounts belonging to global phone directory Truecaller by exploiting the same vulnerability.

On Monday, SEA also infiltrated The Daily Dot news website, and the hacker group is being credited with removing an entire article, altering a future article and accessing email addresses. The attack was in response to the online news site not removing a caricature of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, which was attached to an article about the Tango hack.

The SEA warned The Daily Dot via Twitter to remove the image, but the news site did not respond, so an SEA attacker then gained access to the Daily Dot website by posing as a contributor, according to a Daily Dot post.

“Upon review, the editorial staff concluded that [the image] was a little much and updated the story with a new image,” according to The Daily Dot. 

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