The 21st Century Phenomenon





Computer hackers have disrupted Al Qaeda’s ability to communicate via internet by interrupting the flow of videos and messages of the outfit, an anti terror expert said. The attack was reportedly carried out by unknown hackers in the past few days.”Al Qaeda’s online communication have been temporarily crippled, and it does not have a single trusted distribution channel available on the internet,” Evan Kohlmann of Flashpoint Global Partners, which monitors the outfit’s communication, was quoted as saying by the NBC News on Wednesday 06/29/2011 (see – Cyber Jihad).

It was “well coordinated and involved the use of an unusual cocktail of relatively sophisticated techniques,” Kohlmann said. “My guess is that it will take them at least several days more to repair the damage and get their network up and functioning again,” he said (see also – Web-Watchdog).

British newspapers reported earlier this month that the UK government had also hacked into Al Qaeda’s online INSPIRE MAGAZINE and replaced instructions to make bombs with instructions to make cupcakes (see – Inspire-Recipes). It reportedly took the terrorist organization two weeks to get back the original posting.

Cybersecurity analysts say the al-Shamukh forum appears to have been taken down by a fairly sophisticated cyberattack that hit not only the website, but the server — which is the main computer that enables people to access the site over the Internet.

“The al-Shamukh website had become the most trusted and exclusive haunt for e-jihadists,” said Jarret Brachman, a terrorism expert who has spent a decade monitoring Al-Qaida’s media operations and advises the U.S. government. “If it doesn’t come back up soon, the forum’s registered members will start migrating to the half a dozen other main forums, all of whom are probably chomping at the bit to replace Shamukh as the pre-eminent Al-Qaida forum” (see also – Al-Shamika).
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