Web vandalism on the rise

Tuesday, 22 October 2002, 2:24 PM EST

In the past two weeks, Zone-H.org proprietor Roberto Preatoni said defacements have increased to more than 500 separate attacks a day and more than 1,500 over weekends. A year ago, he said, his site got around 30 to 50 defacement notices a day from hackers.

This increasing trend, he said, should put IT managers on notice, because if crackers (malicious hackers) have access to the Web server controlling public pages, they likely have access to the entire network.

"There are some defacements not getting to the root level, but most of the time there is a root privilege access behind the defacement, therefore everything which is contained in the Web server is at danger," he said.

A new wave of hackers, drawn both for the appeal of the underground movement and for political reasons, has cropped up in recent times, giving every indication more defacements and Web server compromises are forthcoming. Preatoni predicts the number will rise to 700 defacements a day before December.

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