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In a blog post, the hackers said the attacks were in response to the BBC's "lies and fabrication of news" regarding events in Syria. "The Syrian Electronic Army published the truth about Syria on the hacked accounts," the hackers wrote.
Tweets posted by the hackers, according to a screenshot by Twitter user @Muschelschloss, included "Long Live #Syria Al-Assad #SEA" and "Tsunami alert for Haifa: Residents are advised to return to Poland."
The accounts were quickly restored, with BBC Radio Ulster tweeting,"Apologies to all our followers our account was hacked today."https://o1.qnsr.com/log/p.gif?;n=203;c=204650394;s=9477;x=7936;f=201801171506010;u=j;z=TIMESTAMP;a=20392931;e=i
BBC News reports that the accounts were breached soon after a phishing e-mail was sent to some BBC e-mail accounts, though it's not clear whether or not the two incidents were related. "We apologise to our audiences that this unacceptable material appeared under the BBC's name," a BBC spokeswoman said.
Softpedia's Eduard Kovacs suggests the fact that three accounts were hit simultaneously indicates they likely shared either a common password or a common e-mail address for password resets.