Credit card numbers and the personal information of thousands of Israelis were published online Tuesday morning, and a Saudi hacker group is taking credit.
Calling themselves Group-XP, and the “largest Wahabi hacker group of Saudi Arabia,” according to a post online, the hackers claim they got information belonging to nearly half a million Israelis by hacking a well-known Israeli sports Web site. The hackers say they redirected visitors of the site to a page where they could download a file of the users’ personal information.
Israeli credit card companies said Monday that the list is repetitive and only includes 14,000 Israelis, Haaretz reports. The companies said they have blocked all the cards on the list, and will return customers their money should any purchases be made on the cards. The Bank of Israel estimates that about 15,000 credit cards were compromised.
The hackers wrote the following statement about the attack, according to the Israeli news site Ynet News:
“It will be so fun to see 400,000 Israelis stand in line outside banks and offices of credit card companies to complain that their cards had been stolen. To see banks shred 400,000 cards and reissue them. To see that Israeli cards are not accepted around the world, like the Nigerian cards.”
Ynet also reports that many of the entries on the published list of credit card information are repeated, incorrect or out of date.
The hackers may be misleading people about how they got the information, too, according to Yoram Hacohen, head of the Israeli Law, Information and Technology Authority, Hacohen told Israeli radio that the hackers may have actually gotten the information by merging information from sources and databases that had previously been hacked and published.
The Los Angeles Times reports that Israeli Web sites have been the targets of hackers recently, often for political reasons. The Foreign Ministry's Web site was hacker earlier this week, and the Web sites of the Mossad, Israel's spy agency, and the Israel Defense Forces were briefly inaccessible in November.
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