TechCrunch hit by two hacks


Tech news site TechCrunch has suffered and recovered from two hacking attacks in the past 24 hours, it has been reported.

"As some people noticed, at approximately 10:30 pm PST on Monday evening the main site in the TechCrunch Network was hacked and redirected. The site was back up briefly at 11:30 pm but shortly went down again. As of 2:00 am, the site is back up and appears to be stable," stated a story posted on the TechCrunch website.

"At this point we're still gathering information on how the site was compromised, and will update this post with additional information."

The first hack, which posted a message containing swearing and linked to adult and pirated content, was followed by a subsequent attack

"There's no such time as a 'good time' to be hacked of course, but one can only imagine that today is a better day for TechCrunch to be hacked than tomorrow," Sopho's Graham Cluley said in a blog post following the first attack yesterday morning.

"That's when the site will be expecting a large amount of traffic as millions of people around the world look for information about the new iSlate/iPad/iTablet/iDontKnowWhatItWillBeCalled due to be announced by Apple. This hack is a salutary warning to all website owners that everyone has to be on their guard against hacking, whether your site is big or small."

The second attack was slightly more targeted in that it directed foul language at the site's co-editor and founder Michael Arrington. In light of the recent Google/China spat over cyber attacks and web freedom of speech, following the first episode, he joked on Twitter that China was responsible for the attacks. He later - most likely tongue-in-cheek - suggested it was Canada instead.

Cluley added: "... someone needs to learn some manners don't they? Even if they don't like being forced to go through an ad page before reading TechCrunch's content, this is hardly an appropriate way to vent your fury, is it?"

"At the time of writing, the site has been restored to normal operation - but you can't help but conclude that someone has a personal vendetta against the site. Which will keep TechCrunch on its toes in the coming hours, especially as the uber-hot story of the imminent new Apple tablet computer is scheduled to be announced to the world by Steve Jobs later today. And that's the kind of news that normally would generate a lot of traffic to TechCrunch's website."

Maggie Holland

Maggie has been a journalist since 1999, starting her career as an editorial assistant on then-weekly magazine Computing, before working her way up to senior reporter level. In 2006, just weeks before ITPro was launched, Maggie joined Dennis Publishing as a reporter. Having worked her way up to editor of ITPro, she was appointed group editor of CloudPro and ITPro in April 2012. She became the editorial director and took responsibility for ChannelPro, in 2016.

Her areas of particular interest, aside from cloud, include management and C-level issues, the business value of technology, green and environmental issues and careers to name but a few.