French newspaper Le Monde said it had recovered its Twitter account soon after it was hacked late Tuesday by the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA). The group, which supports Syrian leader Bashar Assad, has also hacked the accounts of The Daily Telegraph, The Los Angeles Times, The Associated Press and CNN in the recent past.
The Twitter account of Le Monde had displayed SEA's logo and a message in French saying, "the Syrian Electronic Army was here," Mashable reported. However, within minutes after the first message appeared online, the account was reportedly suspended. Le Monde later posted a tweet saying: "After hacking into our account, our teams have now taken the hand. We apologize for any fraudulent posts on our behalf," Mashable reported.
Après le piratage de notre compte, nos équipes ont désormais repris la main. Nos excuses pour les messages frauduleux postés en notre nom.
— Le Monde (@lemondefr) January 21, 2015
SEA had also reportedly posted a tweet on Le Monde’s Twitter handle, reading “Je ne suis pas Charlie," ("I'm not Charlie") to counter the “Je Suis Charlie” hashtag that gained popularity after the Paris attacks last month, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported. The Syrian group also managed to post tweets supporting Palestine and protesting the bombings in Syria, before the account was suspended, according to the report.
Le Monde added that the group had failed to hack into its website on Sunday and Monday, and that SEA's hackers had gained access to the paper's Twitter account by sending false emails to the paper’s editors, AFP reported. The group has been trying to hit back at media organizations because of their reporting of the Syria conflict.
Last April, the group had taken control of AP's Twitter account and posted false messages that President Barack Obama was injured by explosions at the White House. In October, the group reportedly also hacked Obama’s Twitter account and posted links directing readers to Syrian pro-government propaganda. Last month, a group purporting to be the SEA also hacked International Business Times’ internal publishing systems, deleted an article and threatened to further disrupt the site.