A coordinated hacking attack has hit Reddit, vandalizing dozens of subreddits with material that supports the 2020 reelection campaign of President Donald Trump.
A moderator on r/SubredditDrama posted a list of affected subreddits, which includes r/NFL, r/BlackMirror, r/Food, r/Beer, r/Naruto, r/RupalsDragRace, r/DestinyTheGame, r/TheDailyZeitgeist, and many more.
— Kristi YamaGuccimane™️ (@crispymemed) August 7, 2020
“An investigation is underway related to a series of vandalized communities. It appears the source of the attacks were compromised moderator accounts. We are working to lock down those accounts and restore impacted communities,” a Reddit spokesperson said in a statement to Digital Trends.
Reddit’s security team has started fixing the defaced subreddits, but the vandalism is reportedly returning after just minutes, according to an investigation by ZDNet.
The post on r/SubredditDrama, which provided subreddit moderators with instructions on how they themselves can remove the vandalism, claimed that some of the hacked accounts had two-factor authentication enabled. The post also speculated that the accounts used the same combinations of usernames and passwords in other online forums with weak security, or that a third-party mobile app was compromised.
In June, after years of violating content policies, Reddit shut down r/The_Donald, the Trump-supporting subreddit that was placed under quarantine last year for content that supported violence.
The shutdown of r/The_Donald came alongside Reddit’s new content policy that aimed to push hate speech out of the online community. About 2,000 subreddits were banned, including r/darkhumorandmemes, r/chapotraphouse, r/consumeproduct, r/darkjokecentral, and r/gendercritical.
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