Chinese hackers suspected of defacing Philippines news site

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 14 April, 2013, 7:00pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 29 August, 2013, 4:13am


Suspected Chinese hackers yesterday defaced the website of the Philippines News Agency, officials said, a possible repeat of cyberattacks last year also blamed on China during a territorial row.

The state-run agency's website temporarily displayed China's flag and the text: "China Hacker EvilShadow Team, We are evil shadow. We are the team. We have our own dignity China Hacker Lxxker."

Asked if Chinese hackers were behind the attack, presidential spokeswoman Abigail Valte said an investigation was pending but added: "The note left on the site tends to invite that conclusion."

Another government spokesman, Herminio Coloma, said the hackers group shared news of the attack via Facebook.

"The site is working again now," Coloma said, but did not say how long it had been down. He said authorities were trying to track down the group and had beefed up cybersecurity in the wake of the attack.

The hacking came days after Philippine authorities arrested 12 suspected Chinese poachers whose boat ran aground in a protected coral reef in the Sulu Sea that is well within the country's territory.

The poaching was the latest irritant to bilateral relations damaged by overlapping territorial claims to the neighbouring South China Sea.

Last year, cyberattacks on several government websites were blamed on Chinese hackers during a stand-off in Scarborough Shoal, a group of rocky outcrops in the South China Sea that is close to Luzon island.