2 November 2005


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Media Release from Chief Ministers Office

1 November 2005


Chief Minister Jon Stanhope has asked the Australian Federal Police to investigate sabotage of his website, on which the draft anti-terrorism legislation and associated pieces of legal advice had been posted.

The sabotage was first noticed this morning. Those attempting to access the site are diverted to a page reading “Fatal Error was here ohh yeahh let’s go! irc.gigachat.net #Ferror”.

Mr Stanhope said he had no idea who was behind the sabotage but was deeply troubled that it had occurred at a time when interest in the draft anti-terror laws was at its public height.

“The ACT Government’s IT service provider, InTACT, is working to restore access to the site as soon as possible,” Mr Stanhope said this afternoon.

“I am keen to post a new piece of advice I have received today in relation to the latest draft of the Federal Government’s draft Bill and I want the people of the ACT and the broader Australian community to have easy access to this new contribution to the debate.

”I have asked the Australian Federal Police to investigate this serious and most undemocratic attack on my capacity to consult and communicate with the people of Canberra.”

UPDATE: ACT Govt IT provider, InTACT, has passed around that the hacking and redirecting of Jon Stanhope’s website yesterday has nothing to do with them as the Chief Ministers website is a political website and not a “government” website and therefore not hosted by InTACT but rather by a privately owned local ISP.

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Samuel Gordon-Stewart4:02 pm 02 Nov 05

Yes, he or she is 8.

Don’t forget the second assassin who fires twice from behind the grassy knoll and who then escapes in a UFO flown by Elvis and Marilyn Munro.

Samuel Gordon-Stewart2:58 pm 02 Nov 05

6. Anybody who has to be on the receiving end of his rants (Most local media).
7. Somebody taking one of my previous tongue-in-cheek comments out of context and acting against my disclaimer.

Better idea, let’s do a top 10.

Stanhope is riding through a busy parade in an open car. 5 simultaneous shots ring out. Who fired ?

My pick would be:

1. Angry anti-development protestor from Ainslie
2. Angry anti-school development protestor from Kippax
3. Someone from Tuggeranong cause they’re all a bit funny down there
4. A computer geek who repetitively alternated between ‘grand theft auto’ and staring at the CM on his website
5. A pro-whaler from Japan

two things:

if they hacked it they could have added a photo of the cabbage in chief with little devil horns. or a cabbage.

and why on earth has the terrorism laws bill generated FIVE seperate press releases from the CM’s office today ?

Samuel Gordon-Stewart6:22 pm 01 Nov 05

Looks like you’re right about the version of this WP install random.

With my hosting it took about 5 minutes to upgrade WP (mainly due to it being automated). The five minutes was taken up by running a backup and then the automated upgrade, and would have been quicker if I wasn’t hesitant due to it being my first WP upgrade. I would estimate a manual upgrade would take 5-10 minutes.

Well, as long as InTACT is on the case…

Speaking of defacement, is this site still running a vulnerable WordPress? It still says 1.5, and there are at least two critical holes between that and 1.5.2.

If anything, it’s surprising that websites aren’t defaced more often. I got hit with an attack a while ago, but they didn’t actually do anything damaging, just explored the system a bit.

Kerces, I fired up the old IRC client and pointed it to gigachat.net. I joined the channel “#ferror” and there was noone else to be found.

No Mr Evil, the nasty hackers were impinging Stanhopes freedom of speech and should be “rehabilitated” Clockwork Orange style until they truly appreciate Stanhope vision. Nasty Fat Hackers. They stole his Precioussss

Stanhope like freedom of speech (when it suits), so maybe the hackers were exercising their freedom of speech too?

Samuel Gordon-Stewart3:43 pm 01 Nov 05

Stanhope’s site is back to normal (if you can call those photos normal).

Samuel Gordon-Stewart3:39 pm 01 Nov 05

irc.gigachat.net#Ferror appears to be a channel setup by some people running exploits on random sites. They appear (based on the few minutes I have spent there so far) to be IT Admins in various places too.

For those of you who don’t know what IRC is, it stands for Internet Relay Chat, see the wikipedia entry at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IRC

Based on my own webserver logs it is unlikely that they even targetted Stanhope’s site…it was probably the result of InTACT not keeping the software up to date.

My Apache logs are constantly filled with IIS exploit attempts, which is somewhat amusing on its own.

anyone else try following the irc.gigachat.net link listed?

Samuel Gordon-Stewart3:13 pm 01 Nov 05

Whilst I have nothing to do with it all I can say is “Hooray” and then burst out laughing.

From a mature stance I should denounce the defacing of any website, but I refuse to take that stance in relation to the scary Stanhope photo site.

Is it immature of me to find this kind of funny?
…Nevermind then.

I haven’t been able to get to the vic racing club website all day, coincidence perhaps ?

“Mr Stanhope said he had no idea who was behind the sabotage…”

Well, clearly Fatal Error was behind it. Duh!

3 things

first – it wasn’t us

b – I wonder if this has increased the traffic to our copy of the draft

lastly – how un-Australian to do it on Melbourne Cup day, they should be locked up as Terrorists

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