Screenshot of hacked YouTube

Google-owned video hosting giants YouTube were hacked earlier today, and fingers are pointing at 4chan.

The social networking news-site Mashable has this to say:

Today, members of the Internet communities 4chan and and other enterprising computer whizzes hacked YouTube using a vulnerability in the site’s comment system. While the hack was used on a variety of videos, striking music videos featuring teen pop idol Justin Bieber was the most popular activity.

Twitter lit up with complaints about the problem, Google support got some concerned posts on its forum, and we received tips in our inbox. The event caused quite a Sunday-morning stir.

The bug allowed users to inject HTML (the code that most websites are built with) that could be executed on the site, whereas HTML within comments is supposed to be restricted. The hackers did everything from force pop-up messages to appear over the site declaring that it had been hacked to redirecting Bieber video pages to sites hosting pornography and malware.

Google disabled comments within an hour of the start of the attack, then corrected the exploited bug within two hours, according to a statement sent to The Next Web.

Internet community 4chan has been waging a small cultural war against Justin Bieber, and its members exploited the bug to target the artist’s videos specifically. Last week they conspired to try and send Bieber to North Korea.


Chatter on 4chan is showing further evidence of their involvement in the vandaism:

This seems, at least to me, to be the work of  a certain ‘Tetris Online playing community’ rather than the mighty chan. Time will tell, and we’ll keep you posted.

Ken Eakins

About the Author

Ken Eakins is a filmmaker and weird stuff enthusiast from the South of England.

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