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'Team GhostShell' hackers use SQL weakness to raid 100 websites

The new LulzSec or last year's hack trick?

By John E Dunn, TechWorld
August 30, 2012 11:55 AM ET

TechWorld - With LulzSec now apparently long gone, hacking group 'Team GhostShell' appears to have taken up its mantle with a weekend hacking raid it claims wrested 1 million database records from a 100 different websites.

Hackers outflanking line of defense

Under the aegis of "Project Hellfire", the group announced via Pastebin using anti-system rhetoric reminiscent of Anonymous that the attack was the "final form of protest this summer against the banks, politicians and for all the fallen hackers this year."

Whether the numbers claim stacks up is still unclear with security firm Imperva counting 30,000 records in one breached database. Victims of the attack covered banks, consulting firms and government agencies although, again, which ones is hard to verify.

Banks feature prominently in the stolen data, Imperva said, including personal with credit histories taken from these sources.

The passwords show the usual '123456' problem. However, one law firm implemented an interesting password system where the root password, 'law321' was pre-pended with your initials. So if your name is Mickey Mouse, your password is 'mmlaw321'. Worse, the law firm didn't require users to change the password," Imperva said.

Files and documents were also taken.

"A very large portion of these files come from content management systems (CMS) which likely indicates that the hackers exploited the same CMS with a vulnerability in it that allowed a hacker to target it. However, a lot of the stolen content did NOT include any sensitive information.".

The targeted firms will be embarrassed by the revelations but a complex hack this was probably not. The hackers used the common tool SQLmap which in some ways makes the attack's apparent success even more disturbing.

"All aboard the Smoke & Flames Train. Last stop, Hell," announced GhostShell with no hint of the jocularity that became the hallmark of LulzSec.

The group said later in the year it would also be "giving away" mainframe databases revealing Chinese and Japanese technology, the US Stock Exchange requiring 1TB of storage to download.

Earlier in the summer, the same group claimed responsibility for hacking ITWallStreet.com, exposing the data of thousands of job applicants.

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