The loosely-affiliated cyber-group 'Anonymous' has been tied to the compromise of the Fine Gael Website, according to reports.
The attack took place Jan. 9, and compromised some 2,000 of user accounts. According to reports, the information included phone numbers, e-mail addresses and other information.
One of the largest political parties in Ireland, Fine Gael said in a statement it is following up with authorities on the issue. After compromising the site, the attackers posted the following message: "Nothing is safe, you put your faith in this political party and they take no measures to protect you. They offer you free speech yet they censor your voice. Wake up!"
The site remains offline as of publication.
In a separate example of hacktivism, users of South Korea's popular dcinside.com Website took credit for the Jan. 8 hijacking of the official Twitter account of the regime in North Korea and posting messages critical of the government. North Korea's official YouTube account was also reportedly compromised to post a cartoon of Kim Jong-un, son of current leader Kim Jon-il, driving a sports car and running people over.
"As we predicted in our 2011 Threat Predictions, we expect to see hacktivism increase in 2011," said Dave Marcus, director of security research for McAfee Labs, McAfee's research arm. "This case is an example of combining hacktivism and social media as a component for demonstrating political positions, and we expect to see these groups become increasingly more structured and organized."