The US State Department has claimed responsibility for hacking a number of Al Qaeda administered websites in Yemen.
According to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, cyber experts based at the State Department jacked Yemeni tribal websites, deleting and replacing anti-American propaganda.
”Within 48 hours, our team plastered the same sites with altered versions of the ads that showed the toll Al Qaeda attacks have taken on the Yemeni people,” Clinton confirmed earlier this week.
“[Now] extremists are publicly venting their frustration and asking supporters not to believe everything they read on the Internet.”
Clinton described the above-mentioned cyber operation as part of a sustained multipronged attack against terrorists and their supporters.
The digital infiltration was apparently executed by an interagency group of specialists, including diplomats, special operators and intelligence analysts. Dubbed the Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications, its operatives are tasked with countering Al Qaeda’s attempts to recruit new followers on various social networking sites and forums.
“Together, they will work to pre-empt, discredit and outmaneuver extremist propaganda,” she added.
In the meantime, Yemen’s military continues to battle the terrorist group in the wake of a recent suicide bombing that killed 96 soldiers – launching an attack against an Al Qaeda base in Wadi Banaa Arab, near the southern town of Jaar.