Russian Hacker Tries To Sell Access to BBC Server

Reports of a Russian hacker who stealthily took over a BBC computer server before Christmas are circulating far and wide. Hold Security first shared details of the hack with Reuters.

Alex Holden, chief information security officer at Hold Security, told Reuters that his "researchers observed a notorious Russian hacker known by the monikers 'HASH' and 'Rev0lver,' attempting to sell access to the BBC server on Dec. 25."

According to the Reuters report, Holden said "HASH" sought to convince high-profile hackers that he had infiltrated the site by showing them files that could only be accessed by somebody who really controlled it, Holden said, noting that his researchers have found no evidence the conversations led to a deal or that data was stolen from the BBC.

Rehashing 2013's Media Hacks

BBC issued a public statement, stressing, "We do not comment on security issues." Justin Clarke, a principal consultant for the cybersecurity firm Cylance, told Reuters that while "HASH" was only offering access to an obscure FTP server not a Web server, some buyers might see it as a steppingstone to more prized assets within the BBC.

"Accessing that server establishes a foothold within BBC's network which may allow an attacker to pivot and gain further access to internal BBC resources," he said.

This is far from the first time hackers have broken into media servers. Earlier in December, hackers hit The Washington Post for at least the third time in the past three years. The Post was more forthcoming than the BBC, disclosing that the extent of the data loss is not clear, but employees had been instructed to change their user names and passwords -- even though they were stored in encrypted form -- based on the assumption that they may have been compromised.

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