An Israeli web hosting company was hacked over the weekend by online activists presumably linked to Iran. One of the breached websites is a geo-located dating service popular with Israel’s LGBT community.
On Saturday, the hacking group known as “Black Shadow” leaked a portion of the data it had stolen, including the personal details of users of the website “Atraf.”
Atraf is widely-used by the LGBT community in the Tel Aviv area to help connect locals and as an index for LGBT-friendly nightlife. Users worried that data leaked by Black Shadow could “out” Israelis who remain “in the closet” among family and friends.
Other sites breached by the hackers included public transportation companies, a children’s museum and a medical firm that potentially holds sensitive medical data.
Israel and Iran have been engaged in an escalating cyber war in recent years.
At first, Israeli actions were focused on Iran’s nuclear facilities. But a recent cyberattack that disconnected gas stations across the country from the central fuel distribution system was blamed on Israel.
Israeli officials noted that the Jewish state repels hundreds, if not thousands of attempted cyberattacks every day, many of them linked to Iran. Earlier this month, a major Israeli hospital was taken offline in a serious cyberattack, and Iranian hackers have in recent years targeted local infrastructure like Israel’s national water carrier.