Classification.gov.au gets hacked

Classification.gov.au gets hacked

Summary: The Australia's Classification Board website, which determines Australia's film, literature and media classifications, appears to have been hacked by protesters against its regime.

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The Australia's Classification Board website, which determines Australia's film, literature and media classifications, appears to have been hacked by protesters against its regime.

(Credit: Anonymous ZDNet.com.au reader)

The site, which at the time of writing was inaccessible, was confirmed by the classification board's staff to News.com.au to have been hacked last night by what appear to be anti-censorship protesters.

"This site contains information about the boards that have the right to CONTROL YOUR FREEDOMZ," the protesters wrote.

"The Classification Board has the right to not just classify content (the name is an ELABORATE TRICK), but also the right to DECIDE WHAT IS AND ISNT APPROPRIATE and BAN CONTENT FROM THE PUBLIC [sic]."

The hack occurred shortly after Minister for Communications Stephen Conroy appeared on the ABC's current affairs panel Q&A, where the second half of the show was dedicated to the ongoing debate about Conroy's proposed mandatory filtering scheme.

The message the hackers had posted on the Classification Board's site appeared to reference comments the minister had made some months ago regarding the Greens which last December announced it wouldn't support mandatory ISP filtering.

"All opposers must HATE CHILDREN, and therefore must be KILLED WITH A LARGE MELONS during the PROSECUTION PARTIES IN SEPTEMBER [sic]," the hackers wrote.

Spokespeople from the board were unable to respond to ZDNet.com.au's questions at the time of writing.

Topics: Government AU, Censorship, Tech Industry

Liam Tung

About Liam Tung

Liam Tung is an Australian business technology journalist living a few too many Swedish miles north of Stockholm for his liking. He gained a bachelors degree in economics and arts (cultural studies) at Sydney's Macquarie University, but hacked (without Norse or malicious code for that matter) his way into a career as an enterprise tech, security and telecommunications journalist with ZDNet Australia. These days Liam is a full time freelance technology journalist who writes for several publications.

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Talkback

7 comments
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  • Where's the article?

    "This story has either expired or is unavailable at the moment. If you require assistance, please e-mail us at edit@zdnet.com.au and we will help track down the story for you."

    Is this a case of news travelling fast?
    anonymous
  • Censorship in action?

    "This story has either expired or is unavailable at the moment" - story posted at 10.36am
    At 12.24pm I get the ZDNet Tech News Bulletin email - and find the story apparently isn't available, yet theres more 'detail' in the emailed bulletin.
    Is this our new censorship regime in action?
    Do we chalk this one up to "real" Stephen Conroy?
    anonymous
  • Stupid hackers

    This is not the way to get your message across.
    anonymous
  • RE: Stupid hackers

    Thats right, they should have put illegal content on the front page so the classification.gov.au website was added to the blacklist.

    sheesh!
    anonymous
  • @Dear - Stupid Hackers

    Actually Dean, it's exactly the way to get their message across. It got attention, it showed how flawed the system is and showed that the government isn't in control.
    anonymous
  • classification.gov.au down?

    It appears that right now classification.gov.au is down and shows the error message "Bad Request (Invalid Hostname)". Could this be to fix the problem or is it the hackers again?
    anonymous
  • AND IT'S STILL DOWN!

    Not sure what time Hugh wrote his comment, but as of 12:19am March 29th, the site is still down.

    "Bad Request (Invalid Hostname)".

    Brilliant!
    anonymous