ISIS has released one of the longest target lists in the terrorists group’s history. The new list was created and distributed by the pro-ISIS hacking group known as the United Cyber Caliphate. The list contains the names, addresses and email addresses of 8,318 American, Australian and Canadian citizens. The list was posted with a message urging ISIS followers to follow the people named on the list and “kill them strongly to take revenge for Muslims.”
A majority of the names on the list belong to American citizens ranging from State Department employees to ordinary American citizens with no military or government ties. Approximately 7,848 people on the list currently reside in America. Canada was the second most represented country on the list with 312 of it’s citizens being named. 69 Australians and 39 English citizens were also named. The remaining names were made up of an aggregation of people from Belgium, Brazil, China, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, New Zealand, South Korea, Sweden and Trinidad and Tobago.
Despite the size of the list intelligence officials are urging citizens who appeared to remain calm. Government officials doubt the validity of the threat and state that the United Cyber Caliphate is an incompetent group of “wanna-be” hackers. A recent study by the intelligence firm Flashpoint shows that the United Cyber Caliphate is incompetent when it comes to hacking. According to the study the groups most successful “hack” was the result of taking credit for another groups work and most of the information released on their “kill lists” is widely available to the public and requires no hacking skill to access. An almost comically juvenile image, adapted from a Call of Duty video game advertisement, was also included with the list which can be seen below.
The list was posted on Telegram, an online messaging service that is popular among Islamic extremist groups. The latest list is one of many that has been released in the past year. The lists are posted so frequently and contain so much easily accessible information that many military officials are beginning to view the lists as a mere scare tactic intended to instill fear in random citizens. Despite questioning the validity of the threats made by these lists government officials have vowed to continue monitoring ISIS message boards and will continue to investigate the matter.