The Qatar ministry of interior have evidence showing that the cyberattack carried on the official media has been traced to nited Arab Emirates.
The planning for the hacking of Qatar News Agency (QNA) started as early as April. Investigators also reportedly traced the IP (internet protocol) address linked to the hacking to the UAE, officials were quoted as saying by Al Jazeera during a news conference in Doha on Thursday.
“The level and the quality of the hacking was so professional that it had to have "state resources" behind it,” Captain Othman Salem al-Hamoud was quoted as saying by the news broadcaster.
Earlier, Lieutenant-Colonel Ali Mohammed al-Mohannadi, head of the ministry's technology division, said the hacking operation took place in coordination with, and through, "one of the blockading states".
"The hackers had total control of the QNA network, including the related accounts, websites and related social platforms," Mohannadi said.
"This was meant to fabricate and post the false reports, which were attributed to His highness, the Emir."
Officials said the case has been referred to prosecutors.
The cyberattacks reportedly lasted for about three hours, from late at night on May 24 to the early hours of May 25, before the state media's IT experts managed to take back control of the site.
In a video presentation, the ministry said that investigators found out that as early as April, hackers had already "infiltrated" the QNA network "using VPN software" and "scanned the website".
The ministry said the hackers "exploited" a loophole in the network's system, and installed "malicious programmes" which were then later used to carry out the publishing of the "false stories".
Addresses, passwords and emails of all the employees of the state news agency were also collected.
The Qatari emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, had been falsely quoted in May as praising Hamas and saying that Iran was an "Islamic power," the Post reported. In response, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain cut diplomatic and transport ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of supporting "terrorism". Qatar strongly denies the allegations.
Qatar said in late May that hackers had posted fake remarks by the emir, an explanation rejected by Gulf states.
A sixth batch of troops from the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) has reached Qatars capital Doha Wednesday for the support of the struggle with terror and extremism as well as protecting the stability and security in the region. Qatars defense ministry released a Twitter statement Wednesday saying that the group, which went to Qatar under the military cooperation agreement between the two countries, joined the other Turkish forces in Doha and started a mutual mission with the Qatari Armed Forces
The United Arab Emirates reportedly was behind the hacking of Qatari websites in late May which led to boycotting of the nation by Saudi-led group of countries. The UAE hacked the websites or paid for getting them hacked (which is still unclear) in order to post false quotes linked to Qatar's emir, prompting the Qatar-Gulf diplomatic crisis, the Washington Post reported on Sunday, citing US intelligence officials
The international Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is expected to meet on July 6 in Cairo with representatives of the countries that have cut ties with Qatar to discuss demands from Qatar regarding the opening of new air routes over the international waters in the Gulf, the
Qatari Minister of defense has criticized the blockade imposed by a Saudi-led Arabian nations' Group as 'bloodless declaration of war'. The minister, Khaled al-Athiyah was quoted as saying in an interview with London based Al-araby Al Jadeed newspaper
Turkey has turned down a demand by Saudi Arabia and its allies in the anti-Qatar coalition that its base in the tiny Gulf state is shut down. Under a Turkey-Qatar agreement, the former has agreed to set up a base, which it hastened after Saudi Arabia and its allies imposed an economic blockade on Qatar citing its support to terrorist organizations
Qatar will purchase Boeing F-15 fighter jets worth an estimated US $12billion, an agreement to this effect was concluded by Qatari Minister of Defence Khalid Al Attiyah and his US counterpart Jim Mattis in Washington DC on Wednesday,
Five persons suspected to have hacked into the Qatar News Agency (QNA) website in April, were arrested in Turkey earlier this week. “Our friends in Turkey answered us a short time ago
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