Reddit’s popular Q&A forum r/IAmA has experienced its highest highs and lowest lows this week. Reddit earned international media attention following President Obama’s visit, arguably Reddit’s biggest success yet. Then, Wednesday night, the forum was hacked. Bad.
TV host Joy Behar was answering redditor’s questions when the forum was hacked by trolls for about 10 minutes. They were able to gain control over moderator ranks at r/IAmA, stripping away the section’s customizable design elements and adding their own. It was mostly porn, in case you were wondering. But you can check out NSFW screencaps here. Warning: It wasn’t awesome porn, it was the scary kind.
Legitimate AMAs were removed too. The trolls bragged and bragged.
Luckily, the hack was short-lived because Reddit’s legitimate r/IAmA’s moderators reacted quickly, restoring order in a matter of minutes. Though the most visible damage was quickly repaired, it took about half an hour to fully fix the CSS mess.
The hackers are suspected to be members of the “gametrolls” crew, a group of redditors who competitively troll. They use a points system and leaderboards in their shenanigans, and their subreddits have been banned repeatedly by Reddit’s staff.
All of the trolls involved in the hack have been banned, but due to Reddit’s open system and all-volunteer power structure, it’s likely they won’t stay away long.