by Seth Rosenblatt @sethr January 12, 2015 10:34 AM PS | CNET.com
Two social-media accounts for the US military’s Central Command have been hacked by an apparent Islamic State sympathizer.
The official Twitter and YouTube accounts for the organization, also known as Centcom, had their profile images replaced by a group of ISIS supporters on Monday. The group appears to call itself “CyberCaliphate.” Centcom oversees US military forces in Central Asia and the Middle East, including Afghanistan and Iraq.
“We can confirm that the Centcom Twitter and YouTube accounts were compromised earlier today. We are taking appropriate measures to address the matter. We have no further information to provide at this time,” according to a Centcom statement. Centcom later called the hack “cybervandalism,” saying no classified information was released and none of its internal computer servers was breached.
The hacks continue a long-standing trend attacking websites and social-media accounts to send political messages. Well-known groups, such as the Syrian Electronic Army, have used the tactics for years, attacking media, business, education and government Twitter accounts, websites and other Internet channels.
Two videos were uploaded to the Centcom YouTube account supporting ISIS, a Sunni Muslim terrorist group that operates in the same geographic regions as Centcom. The Centcom Twitter account was suspended following the attack. The first message posted to the Twitter account was around 9:30 a.m. PST, while the first YouTube videos showed up on the account around an hour later.
A message on the Twitter account before it was suspended read, “AMERICAN SOLDIERS, WE ARE COMING, WATCH YOUR BACK, ISIS.” The attackers also posted a link to PasteBin which the attackers said was sensitive information. The YouTube videos were titled “O Soldiers of truth go forth,” and “Flames of War Isis Video.”