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14 April 2024

Hackers falsely claim to crash Gulf bourse sites

By Staff and AFP

In fresh round of propaganda cyber warfare, Israel hackers, who went by the name IDF-TEAM, claimed to have brought down the websites of Saudi and UAE stock exchanges, but when Emirates 24|7 checked, we found nothing untoward on the local bourses’ websites to prove their claim.

“The Israeli hackers, who go by the name IDF-Team, were able to paralyze the Tadawul website, while causing significant delays to the ADX exchange site,” a news report on an Israeli website claimed yesterday evening.

While the hackers apparently wrote that the attack came in response to the “pathetic” hacking of Israeli sites on Monday and warned of continuing attacks that would “paralyze websites for a period of two weeks to a month,” local bourses reported no such incident, and were working perfectly this morning when checked by this website.

Meanwhile, the Saudi Stock Exchange 'Tadawul' issued a statement denying reports claiming that its website was hacked and brought down. The statement confirmed that all its systems were 'safe'.

Earlier this week, unknown hackers managed to shut down both the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) and El Al’s respective websites on Monday, one day after a hacker network threatened to carry out attacks on both sites.

The network, which went by the name “nightmare group,” allegedly caused severe problems for both sites on the day.

Both sites were affected early in the day, posting messages saying they had been taken down for “maintenance.” The websites of two small banks were also attacked, Israeli media reported.

A spokeswoman for the stock exchange confirmed the site had come under attack but said only the website and not the trading systems had been affected.

“There is someone that has been attacking the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange website since this morning,” Idit Yaaron told AFP, describing what appeared to be a distributed denial of service attack (DDOS).

The sites crashed several hours after a hacker who calls himself ‘0xOmar’ warned he was going to target both websites, Israeli media reported.

It was the latest incident in a series of attacks over the past two weeks, which have seen details of tens of thousands of Israeli credit cards posted online and websites defaced by hackers claiming to be from Saudi Arabia or Gaza.

Meanwhile, hackers also brought down several government websites in Azerbaijan, an Israeli ally.

They hacked the interior and communications ministries, that of its governing party and the constitutional court, leaving threats and anti-Israeli messages.

0xOmar first struck on January 3 when he claimed to have posted details of 400,000 Israeli-owned cards online.

Three days later, he said he had published another 11,000 card details, but the links turned out to contain malware that infected anyone who downloaded the information.

Israel’s main credit card companies said about 20,000 valid cards had been affected.

In response, an Israeli hacker called ‘0xOmer’ published details of more than 200 Saudi-owned cards, sparking a spate of tit-for-tat attacks.