Free Syrian Army blames Assad regime for Reuters hack and fake interview

Cyber criminals cracked into Reuters and left a falsified story behind

Reuters has confirmed that its blogging platform was hacked and a fabricated news story and interview were posted Friday morning.

The subject of the fake interview was Free Syrian Army head Riad al-Assad, who was reported to have said that his forces would be retreating from the northern province of Aleppo after repeated conflicts with the Syrian Army.

However, the story is apparently completely untrue and the Free Syrian Army and Reuters have each released statements.

So far no one has taken credit for the cyber attack.

Did they think no one would notice?

" was a target of a hack on Friday," says a statement released by the company.

"Our blogging platform was compromised and fabricated blog posts were falsely attributed to several Reuters journalists. Reuters did not carry out such an interview and the posting has been deleted."

"We are working to address the problem," Reuters later tweeted.

For their part, the Free Syrian Army released a statement blaming the Assad regime they're currently doing battle with.

"[It] was fabricated by the regime, as it seems the news agency was hacked," they said.

But the party behind the attacks has not yet stepped forward, and their motivations remain unclear - after all, it's not as if Reuters wasn't going to notice that controversial extra article on their blog.

Taking action

Reuters presumably continues to look into the cyber attack, though the company's blogs site is back online after being taken down this morning.

'We are working to address the problem' - Reuters

The conflict in Syria began in early 2011, and protesters continue to call for the resignation of President Bashar al-Assad.

But it's not surprising that one side or the other (or even a third party) would try to skew public perception by creating falsified stories.

After all, war is really won in the hearts and minds of the people - and, apparently, in their blog posts.


Michael Rougeau

Michael Rougeau is a former freelance news writer for TechRadar. Studying at Goldsmiths, University of London, and Northeastern University, Michael has bylines at Kotaku, 1UP, G4, Complex Magazine, Digital Trends, GamesRadar, GameSpot, IFC, Animal New York, @Gamer, Inside the Magic, Comic Book Resources, Zap2It, TabTimes, GameZone, Cheat Code Central, Gameshark, Gameranx, The Industry, Debonair Mag, Kombo, and others.

Micheal also spent time as the Games Editor for, and was the managing editor at GameSpot before becoming an Animal Care Manager for Wags and Walks.