UPDATE 1010 GMT: Twitter has posted, “Twitter’s DNS [Domain Name System] records were temporarily compromised but have now been fixed. We are looking into the underlying cause and will update with more information soon.”
UPDATE 0945 GMT: When FoxNews caught up with this story, they included this information:
"Above the flag, in Arabic, read: 'Hezbollah is victorious.' On the flag, in red Arabic writing: 'Yassin' (an Arabic name written in bold) then in smaller Arabic print 'the feast of peace'. Below the flag was more written in Farsi."
0755 GMT: We just found the screenshot of Twitter's website when it was "occupied" by the "Iranian Cyber Army". It is the same text and image that appeared on the Green Movement's website Mowj-e-Sabz on Wednesday.
I woke this morning to find that Twitter was running extremely slowly and sometimes grinding to a halt. Indeed, since 1200 GMT yesterday there have been serious slow-downs in delivery of messages.
Service is now picking up, but the hot story is that Twitter was hacked yesterday by the "Iranian Cyber Army" with this message:
THIS SITE HAS BEEN HACKED BY IRANIAN CYBER ARMY
U.S.A. Think They Controlling And Managing Internet By Their Access, But THey Don’t, We Control And Manage Internet By Our Power, So Do Not Try To Stimulation Iranian Peoples To….
NOW WHICH COUNTRY IN EMBARGO LIST? IRAN? USA?
WE PUSH THEM IN EMBARGO LIST
Sharp-eyed EA readers will recognise that "Iranian Cyber Army" is the same group that took over the domain of the Green Movement's website Mowj-e-Sabz/Mowjcamp earlier this week.
Yet, in this apparent victory for Iranian cyber-warfare, there lies I think a greater admission of defeat. If Twitter has not been that important in the challenge to the regime's legitimacy since the Presidential election of June, why try to knock it out --- raising the ire of millions of users who so far have had little interest in the events in Iran --- at the start of Moharram? That seems more a confession of worry than an assertion of strength.
And it is one thing to take out an opposition website; another to try and still one of the most significant global shifts in the use of the Internet. For a few hours, yes, but for all of today? And the next day? And all the way to the likely mass protests on Ashura on 27 December?
So, if the Iranian Cyber Army did indeed take on and for, at least a moment, knock down Twitter....it may be time to look up the definition of "Pyrrhic victory".