CNET también está disponible en español.

Ir a español

Don't show this again

Security

US Army website offline after hack by Syrian Electronic Army

Supporters of Syrian President Bashar Al Assad post messages critical of US military efforts in the Middle East.

The US Army says it took down its website after it was hacked to prevent a data leak. CNET

The US Army took its official website down Monday as a precaution after it was compromised by a group of hackers that supports Syria's embattled president.

The Syrian Electronic Army claimed responsibility for a Monday hack of Army.mil, the US Army's main website for news and public information. Pop-ups posted to the page appeared to criticize US military efforts in the Middle East.

"Your commanders admit they are training the people they have sent you to die fighting," the pop-up message on www.army.mil read, a screenshot of which the group posted to Twitter.

Attempts to reach the website Monday afternoon were met with a "network error" message. US Army officials confirmed they took the site down to prevent any sensitive data from being compromised.

"Today an element of the Army.mil service provider's content was compromised," Army Brig. Gen. Malcolm B. Frost said in a statement. "After this came to our attention, the Army took appropriate preventive measures to ensure there was no breach of Army data by taking down the website temporarily."

The hack is the second time in less than six months that a US military Web property has been breached by an apparent Islamic State sympathizer. In January, the official Twitter and YouTube accounts for the US military's Central Command were hacked and their profile images replaced by a group of ISIS supporters.

The US government has recently become the frequent target of cyberattacks suspected of originating overseas. A cyberattack on the US government's personnel office revealed last week likely compromised the data of up to 4 million current and former federal employees. After a security breach of an unclassified network used by White House advisers was revealed last year, suspicion immediately fell on hackers thought to be working for the Russian government.

During the past couple of years, the Syrian Electronic Army, which supports the regime of Syrian President Bashar al Assad, has claimed responsibility for several hacks of news sites and company Web sites. The group has hacked into the Twitter account of the parody news site the Onion and it also has gotten into the accounts of the Associated Press , NPR, CBS , the Guardian, and the BBC .