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Hacker Tried to BBC Server Sell Access

A hacker secretly took over a computer server at the BBC, Britain's public broadcaster, and then launched a Christmas Day promotion to talk into other cyber criminals to pay him for access to the system. While it is not recognized if the hacker found any buyers, the BBC's security team taken action to the issue on Saturday and believes it has safe the site, according to a person familiar with the cleanup attempt. A BBC spokesman refused to discuss the happening. "We do not put any statement on security issues," he said. It was not apparent how the BBC, the world's oldest and biggest broadcaster, uses that site, ftp.bbc.co.uk, though ftp systems are typically used to handle the transfer of large data files over the Internet. The attack was first identified by Hold Security LLC; a cyber security firm in Milwaukee that monitors underground cyber-crime forums in seeks out of stolen information. The firm's researchers observed an infamous Russian hacker known by the monikers "HASH" and "Rev0lver," trying to sell access to the BBC server on December 25, the company's founder and chief information security officer, Alex Holden, told. "HASH" sought to talk into high-profile hackers that he had got into the site by showing them files that could only be accessed by someone who really controlled it, Holden said. So far Hold Security researchers have found no proof the conversations led to a deal or that data was stolen from the BBC, Holden said. It is common for hackers to buy and sell access to cooperated servers on underground forums. "Accessing that server establishes a footing within BBC's network which may allow an attacker to revolve and gain further access to internal BBC resources," he said. Media companies, including the BBC, have repetitively been targeted by the Syrian Electronic Army, which supports Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and other hacker activist groups that spoil websites and take over Twitter accounts. Last January the New York Times reported that it had been constantly attacked over four months by Chinese hackers who found employees' passwords.

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