SEANux – a version of Linux from the Syrian Electronic Army

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
@[email protected]

About an hour ago, the notorious Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) posted an interesting tweet.

Soon.. #SEANux: A Linux distribution by the Syrian Electronic Army. #SEA

If you haven’t been following the antics of the SEA then they’re the group of hackers who have made the headlines many times in the last year or so for some fairly basic phishing attacks against media organisations and others who have earned their wrath.

Criminal, wearing hatThe hackers, who claim to be supporters of the Assad regime in Syria, made a name for themselves by managing to snaffle ownership of the social media accounts of various media outlets including The Guardian, ITV, The Telegraph, the Washington Post, Viber, Skype, PayPal, Thomson Reuters, and most recently Forbes, amongst many others.

Which raises the obvious question. If the SEA can be taken seriously with their tweet (and that is a fair question, as it’s quite possible that they are pulling people’s legs), then would you *ever* trust an operating system released by them?

After all, they’ve proven themselves to be untrustworthy and downright criminal with their past antics – so it wouldn’t be a momentous surprise if any software that they did release came complete with a few backdoors, or – failing that – some privacy concerning “bugs”.

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For now, consider me skeptical of SEANux. After all, back in early 2012 the so-called AnonymousOS was released, a purported new operating system from the Anonymous collective – only to reportedly be found ridden with trojan horses.

And while we’re on the subject of who should we trust, let’s not forget this. Back in January visitors to the Syrian Electronic Army’s own website saw some unusual messages, after Turkish hackers used an SEA-like trick to deface it with their own messages.

Graham Cluley is an award-winning keynote speaker who has given presentations around the world about cybersecurity, hackers, and online privacy. A veteran of the computer security industry since the early 1990s, he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows, makes regular media appearances, and is the co-host of the popular "Smashing Security" podcast. Follow him on Twitter, Mastodon, Threads, Bluesky, or drop him an email.

One comment on “SEANux – a version of Linux from the Syrian Electronic Army”

  1. Coyote

    Re: "… then would you *ever* trust an operating system released by them?"

    Perhaps we should ask Forbes, Washington Post and other organisations/corporations/entities who are too trusting, to test it out for us? They are, after all, experts at knowing how this works, especially with SEA. Indeed, they're the gurus so they would know what to look for most! They could sort it out for us all, right?

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