Monday, April 9, 2012

Al-Qaeda sites go silent in possible cyber attack

Al-Qaeda's main Internet sites have gone silent for more than a week in an unprecedented blackout that is most likely the result of a cyber attack, analysts said Tuesday.

"All of them essentially went down" as of March 23, said Aaron Zelin, a researcher at the politics department at Brandeis University.

The outage hit several online forums including two "flagship" sites, al-Fida and Shamukh al-Islam, which serve as a channel for Al-Qaeda forums, providing a stamp of approval for any associated sites, Zelin said.

"The forums authenticate Al-Qaeda's message, therefore they're very important," said Zelin, who writes about extremist Islamist sites on jihadology.net.

"If someone is a true believer in the cause, they're going to go to the forum because they know it's the only place they can get Al-Qaeda's message." Read More