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Israel government Web sites hit by hacker blitz

Government says its Web sites have experienced 44 million hacking attempts but only one successful breach.

Israel's government Web sites have been bombarded by hackers in the last couple of days, logging more than 44 million hacking attempts since Israel launched the Gaza air strikes on Wednesday.

One of the attempts was successful, Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz told Reuters, noting that an unidentified site was offline for about 10 minutes before being resurrected. Popular targets include defense-related sites, as well as those of Israel's prime minister, president, and Foreign Ministry.

Most of the attacks have been traced to Israel and the Palestinian territories.

"The ministry's computer division will continue to block the millions of cyber attacks," Steinitz said. "We are enjoying the fruits of our investment in recent years in developing computerized defense systems."

The blitz was launched by the online hactivist collective Anonymous, which said it protesting the attacks taking place on Gaza. Dubbed OpIsrael, the hacking spree also targeted retail and business sites, allegedly resulting in the defacement or shut down of hundreds of sites through a variety of methods, including denial-of-service (DoS) attacks.

According to the latest list, 663 sites have been affected.

In a press release, Anonymous said, "the government of Israel publicly threatened to sever all Internet and other telecommunications into and out of Gaza they crossed a line in the sand. As the former dictator of Egypt Mubarack [sic] learned the hard way - we are ANONYMOUS and NO ONE shuts down the Internet on our watch."