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April 15th, 2010

The Daily Telegraph Subdomains Defaced By Angry Hacktivists

Two websites hosted on the domain were defaced to display Romanian patriotic messages and the country’s flag, yesterday. The hacktivists who claimed responsibility for the attack expressed anger at the British media for portraying the Romanian people in an unfavorable light.

The attack targeted the and websites and was originally reported on the Romanian Security Team (RST) hacking forum. However, according to the message left behind on the affected websites, the compromise is attributed to a group called Romanian National Security (R.N.S.).

It seems that both of the affected subdomains were being used for Daily Telegraph promotions. “With the Telegraph’s Wine and Dine for only £10 offer enjoy two courses and a glass of Bordeaux for only £10 at more than 600 restaurants and pubs,” reads a Google cached summary for Meanwhile, seems to correspond to a campaign, which allows readers to “save up to 50% at more than 400 hotels throughout the British isles.”

There is a strong possibility that the Daily Telegraph was targeted as a representative of the entire British media, because the hackers were a lot broader in their accusations. “We’re tired of sitting and watching how ‘scum’ like you mock our country. Of the picture you paint of us, and which has nothing to do with reality, by calling us ‘Romanian gypsies’ and by airing [expletive] shows like TopGear. For having the nerve to step on the toes of an entire country, be warned that we will not stop here!,” they wrote [human translation from Romanian], before ending their statement with “Guess what, gypsies aren’t Romanians, morons.”

The TopGear reference concerns the first episode of the series’ 14th season, which follows the TopGear team in its quest to locate and drive along the Romanian Transfagarasan highway, one of the most dramatic paved roads in Europe. Unfortunately, the segment contains some rather unflattering remarks about the Eastern European country and its people.

The irony of this attack is while the hacktivists condemn ethnic discrimination – treating Romanians differently because of their nationality – it goes on to indirectly discriminate gypsies (Romani people) by suggesting that being a member of that ethnic group is a bad thing.

At the time of writing this article, only the defacement was still live. A song called The Lonely Sheppard, played by world-renowned Romanian pan flute master Gheorghe Zamfir, loads in the background.

Credit: News

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