Brazil’s largest news portals UOL and Folha hacked; redirected to RedTube

The hack was apparently done against a proposed law that would limit pornography in Brazil.

Last week we exclusively broke the news about Google Brazil domain’s defacement due to DNS hijacking, now another high profile company in the country has faced the wrath of hackers when earlier Friday morning all domains under UOL and Grupo Folha were redirected to a famous pornographic website RedTube.

Grupo Folha is the third largest Brazilian media conglomerate whilst Universo Online (UOL) is a web content, products and services Brazilian firm. It belongs to Grupo Folha enterprise and one of the most visited websites in the country.

It all started around 9 am Brazil time when both UOL and Grupo Folha websites started redirecting its readers to RedTube and or Xvideos, another pornographic website. The hackers managed to break into the servers UOL and Folha, implementing a code that made all targeted websites redirect to the adult ones.

At first, users were shocked to see the redirection and took it as a malware attack on their devices but gradually realized that it’s not them but the websites themselves falling prey to hackers. However, it is still unclear who was behind the whole scheme.

Some users on Twitter shared screenshots of a UOL’s technology website displaying a deface page apparently uploaded by ProtoWave hacking group. The deface message itself was asking users to click on a cat to read group’s background but upon clicking, they were redirected to RedTube.

Source: Twitter

ProtoWave is a famous Brazilian hacktivist group who previously hacked the official website of a homophobic Pastor during Gay Pride Parade in Brazil. ProtoWave was also behind the defacement of MMA and UFC Fighter Vitor Belfort’s website, however, it is being said that the group targeted UOL and Grupo Folha in retaliation against reports about a proposed law that would limit pornography in Brazil.

The weird part about this hack is that UOL and Grupo Folha kept on posting their website links on their massive social media platforms and did not acknowledge the hack whatsoever.

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At the time of publishing this article, all UOL and Folha websites were down; yet their social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter were constantly posting their article links.

Written by Waqas

Waqas Amir is a Milan-based cybersecurity journalist with a passion for covering latest happenings in cyber security and tech world. In addition to being the founder of this website, Waqas is also into gaming, reading and investigative journalism.