Hackers calling themselves The Script Kiddies lived up to their name by assuming control of the official USA Today twitter feed this week. The group took the brief opportunity (the publication has since regained access) to engage in some cyber shenanigans – something it’s quickly earning a reputation for.
The “false tweets” USA Today referred to in its Twitter apology were mostly free hacker publicity, said Sophos technology consultant Graham Cluley.
According to Cluley, The Script Kiddies joked about its previous hacking conquests. Belonging to that unenviable group are Fox News, Pfizer and Wal-mart. Taking a page out of LulzSec’s playbook, the group also asked followers to name possible targets (“Who’s next? Vote now!”) and promoted its public Facebook page. As of press time, 48 people “like” The Script Kiddies.
Cluley speculated that The Script Kiddies cracked USA Today’s code with help from a spyware Trojan horse – the same one used to break into NBC’s Twitter feed earlier this month. The group used that illegal access to post a shocking, thankfully false report that the site where the World Trade Center once stood had been attacked again.
When the hackers took over a Fox News-branded Twitter account on the 4th of July, they sent out a message that President Barack Obama had been assassinated. That same day, a spokesperson for the group told THiNK magazine that they hoped to help Anonymous with AntiSec – an operation that aims to expose corruption in government by stealing and leaking top-secret data.
Cluley doesn’t believe it matters if the Script Kiddies are actually script kiddies or just playing the part as a ruse.
“The Script Kiddies might believe that their hacks against media organizations are just childish pranks, but it’s unlikely that the authorities find them amusing. The more social media accounts that they target, the more the computer crime police will be keen to bring them to justice,” he said.