US government websites hacked with pro-Daesh rant

A message posted on the website of Republican Ohio Gov. John Kasich said, “You will be held accountable Trump, you and all your people for every drop of blood flowing in Muslim countries.” A message posted on the hacked website of Republican Ohio Gov. John Kasich said, “You will be held accountable Trump, you and all your people for every drop of blood flowing in Muslim countries.” (Courtesy: Twitter)
Updated 26 June 2017

US government websites hacked with pro-Daesh rant

COLUMBUS, Ohio: Government websites, many of them in Ohio, were hacked Sunday with a message that purports to be supportive of the Daesh terrorist group.
A message posted on the website of Republican Ohio Gov. John Kasich said, “You will be held accountable Trump, you and all your people for every drop of blood flowing in Muslim countries.”
The message, left by “Team System Dz,” also ended, “I love the Islamic state.”
The same message also infiltrated government websites in the town of Brookhaven, New York, according to news reports in that state, as well as the website for Howard County, Maryland. In the past, the group also claimed responsibility for similar hacks in the past in Richland County, Wisconsin, and in places such as Aberdeen, Scotland, and Sweden.
Several other government websites were hacked in Ohio, including that of first lady Karen Kasich, Medicaid, the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction and the Casino Control Commission.
Tom Hoyt, chief communications officer for Ohio’s Department of Administrative Services, was among Ohio officials who confirmed the hack.
“All affected servers have been taken offline and we are investigating how these hackers were able to deface these websites,” he said. “We also are working with law enforcement to better understand what happened.”
He said the hacking in Ohio happened at about 11 a.m. EDT. He hoped the websites would be up and running sometime Monday.
The websites in Brookhaven and Howard County also remained down on Sunday. When asked about the outage on the Brookhaven site, a spokeswoman who answered the phone at the New York town’s police department simply offered a “no comment.”
The hack is part of ongoing cyberterrorism that has impacted governments and corporations across the globe.
Some see these types of hacks — sometimes called “defacement” — as simply a nuisance, though in some instances, they have been disruptive to work and government life.
But others see cause for alarm. “Wake up freedom-loving Americans. Radical Islam infiltrating the heartland,” Josh Mandel, the Ohio treasurer and a Republican candidate for US Senate, said in a tweet Sunday.
Authors of the website “Cryptosphere,” which tracks hackers worldwide, have detailed dozens, if not hundreds, of similar hacks in recent years by the so-called Team System DZ, which they called a “pro-ISIS hacker crew” and claim are based in Algeria.
Impacted websites, they said, have included those for a synagogue in Florida, the student union at the University of New Brunswick in Canada, for UK Rugby and a number of websites on Wordpress.


Iran dismisses ‘desperate’ US move to end nuclear waivers

Updated 28 May 2020

Iran dismisses ‘desperate’ US move to end nuclear waivers

  • ‘Ending waivers for nuclear cooperation with Iran ... has effectively no impact on Iran’s continued work’

TEHRAN: Tehran on Thursday dismissed the impact of what it called Washington’s “desperate attempt” to end sanction waivers for nations that remain in the Iran nuclear accord.
The Atomic Energy Organization of Iran said the United States had made the move in a bid “to distract public opinion from its continued defeats at the hands of Iran.”
“Ending waivers for nuclear cooperation with Iran... has effectively no impact on Iran’s continued work” on what the Islamic republic insists is a purely civilian nuclear energy program, its spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi added in a statement published on the agency’s website.
The US decision, he said, was in response to Iranian fuel shipments to Venezuela — which is also under US sanctions — and the “significant advancements of Iran’s nuclear industry.”
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday that the United States was responding to Iran’s “brinksmanship” — its scrapping of certain nuclear commitments aimed at pressuring Washington to remove sanctions as called for by the 2015 accord.
“These escalatory actions are unacceptable and I cannot justify renewing the waiver,” Pompeo said in a statement.
President Donald Trump withdrew the US from the landmark agreement — also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA — and reimposed sanctions on Iran in 2018.
The remaining parties to the deal include Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia.
In May 2019, Iran announced it was suspending nuclear commitments to the deal, starting with removing limits on its heavy water and enriched uranium stockpiles.
It was in retaliation for US sanctions and what Iran deemed Europe’s inaction to provide it with the JCPOA’s economic benefits.
Washington had until now issued waivers to allow companies, primarily from Russia, to keep carrying out the nuclear work of the agreement without risking legal ramifications in the US economy.
It will end waivers that allowed the modification of the heavy water reactor in Arak, which prevented it from using plutonium for military use, as well as the export of spent and scrap research reactor fuel.
Kamalvandi said ending the waivers would not impact Iran’s continued work on the Arak reactor and “other equipment” by Iranian experts.