Croatian police are probing the hacking of the ‘Slobodna Dalmacija’ website, where hackers replaced content with pro-Russian articles on Ukraine.
Croatian police are probing Tuesday’s hacking of the daily Slobodna Dalmacija website by an unknown assailant. The paper reported that “a couple of older articles in Slobodna Dalmacija were replaced with articles promoting Russian propaganda in the war with Ukraine”.
Around ten articles were replaced, it wrote. “Our services spotted the attack on time and are working on solving the problem. The articles have been removed and the attack was reported to the police,” it added.
“Western Deception Machine”, “Which Side Are You On?”, and “The United States of America Admitted They Have Hidden Laboratories in Ukraine”, are just some of the fake articles that the hackers posted online.
Hrvoje Zovko, president of the Croatian Journalists’ Association, HND, condemned the attack. “We condemn this attack and hope the investigation will reveal where it originated from and who was behind it. Unfortunately, something like this is not unexpected in conditions of war. We call all institutions to get involved in the case and all media to report similar incidents immediately, if they happened,” Zovko said.
He added that the incident was reported to the European Federation of Journalists, EFJ. Ricardo Gutiérrez, EFJ secretary, said: “We strongly condemn this act of piracy and call on all Croatian judicial bodies to identify and process the perpetrators. This way, media become a hostage! This is very serious. This is the first time we encountered this type of manipulation of opinion. We believe this type of cyber-attacks might become more and more common.”
The police’s cybercrimes unit is investigating the matter.
Editor-in-chief Sandra Lapenda Lemo told Croatian news agency HINA that the investigation is ongoing and that the articles in question had been deleted. The daily apologized to its readers for “seeing content which at no circumstances reflects the editorial policy of Slobodna Dalmacija”.
The daily newspaper is published in Split. Its first issue was published on June 17, 1943.