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Fake BBC site disappears after bogus story on Charlie Hebdo

Jeremy Kirk | Jan. 15, 2015
A fraudulent website that cloned the BBC has gone offline after it received a surge of traffic for running a bogus story concerning the violence at French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo.

Security experts have spotted dubious news websites before that were created as covers for social engineering attacks.

In May 2014, the computer security company iSight Partners said it uncovered a campaign by suspected Iran-based hackers that in part used a fake online news site to gather intelligence on U.S. military members, lawmakers and journalists.

The hackers created fake social networking profiles for employees of the news site, called "NewsOnAir.org," which copied stories from legitimate publishers such as Reuters, the BBC and the Associated Press.

The profiles were then used to befriend associates of the hackers' real targets, who were eventually approached, according to iSight. Victims allowed connections after seeing their colleagues were connected with the fake profiles.

 

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