Hacker Takes Over Torrentz, Sort Of…

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A hacker has successfully changed the nameservers of the popular BitTorrent meta-search engine Torrentz.com. For a few hours the site was replaced with an Adbrite ad, and a link to a warez forum. To top it off, the hacker then contacted the Torrentz admin to brag about his hacking abilities.

torrentzLast week we reported that Torrentz was facing a hostile domain takeover. With a forged driver’s license, the impostor attempted to change the domain Whois. Yesterday, the nameservers to Torrentz were indeed changed, giving the ‘hacker’ control over the Torrentz domain.

Flippy, the admin of Torrentz told us that he noticed some worrying changes when he checked his website late last night. There were banners from Adbrite at the top and bottom of the site, banners that didn’t belong there. It turns out that “the hacker” we mentioned before, managed to change the nameservers of the torrentz.com domain. In the middle of the new page torrentz.eu was now loading in a frame, so the site was usable apart from the extra ads.

When Flippy added some Javascript to the torrentz.eu site to prevent it from loading inside the frame, the .com domain suddenly linked to some fresh warez forum and an image hosting site. The warez forum, warez2share.com, was apparently hosted on a shared hosting account, and it didn’t take long before the account was suspended because of the traffic overload.

The hacker didn’t stop there of course, and he soon changed the page to a single Adbrite banner. And as if that wasn’t enough, he decided to email Flippy, to tell him how good of a hacker he is. “So, I emailed him back, and informed him that I have a lawyer who will subpoena Adbrite first thing in the morning, to get the account’s details,” Flippy told us.

After some emails back and forth, the hacker suddenly changed his tone. After Flippy reminded him that forging a US driver’s license is a serious crime, he suddenly became surprisingly cooperative. Instead of bragging about his hacker skills, he was suddenly willing to change the nameservers back. At the time of publication, the domain details have indeed been reverted, and until the changes clear, torrentz.com is being redirected to the backup domain, torrentz.eu.

It is not over yet though, as Flippy told us that he will do everything he can to find out the identity of the ‘hacker’, so stay tuned.

Update: The hacker is from California and forged a CA drivers license, which he can be put in jail for. Flippy, however, decided not to go after him, since it would be very costly to do from Poland, and it’s not worth it for 4 hours downtime.


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