Lulz Security has claimed responsibility for false online reports of News International mogul, Rupert Murdoch’s death, calling the attack ‘Murdoch Meltdown Monday’ on their Twitter feed.
The stories posted on the Times and Sun websites claimed Murdoch had been found dead after a reported drug overdose, with the headline on new-times.co.uk reading ‘Media Mogul’s Body Discovered’. The main Times and Sun websites, both owned by News International, were quickly taken down for a short time, but have both since been restored.
LulzSec posted a number of posts announcing the success of the incident, and also warned against future attacks. “We have owned Sun/News of the World — that story is simply phase 1,” they Tweeted. “Expect the lulz to flow in coming days.” The hacker group also claimed to be “sitting on” a collection of News International emails, which they were prepared to publicize.
In response to the attack, News International has initiated an aggressive IT security crackdown. Staff have reportedly been given new login and password credentials, access codes for the organization’s content management systems have been changed, and remote systems access has been shut down.
The attack came on the eve Rupert Murdoch and his son James were to appear at a hearing in front of the Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee. Two hours into today’s hearing, a man was arrested after splattering Murdoch with a pie plate full of foam. The session was briefly suspended, but resumed a short time later.