Rumours that the Internet would witness a sustained and devastating cyber-attack by Islamic "cyber-terrorists" today have turned out to be completely baseless.

The non-story kicked off earlier this week when Kaspersky Labs execs referred to reports on unspecified Arab websites that Islamic hackers had declared 26 August as a day of "electronic jihad" against Israel. The comments were picked up in the Russian media, resulting in a number of alarmist articles on the supposed threat. "Terrorists will paralyse the Internet on 26 August," reported MosMews.

Vmyths editor Rob Rosenberger was quick to dismiss the reports as "baseless hysteria" pointing out that the latest prediction of cyber-apocalyse are nothing new. Previous "cyber-wars" have resulted in nothing beyond a few defaced websites. Rosenberger's predictions have been borne out by a notable absence of carnage of the information cyber-highway this morning.

Meanwhile Kaspersky Labs is distancing itself from the story. It seems the Russian media put a sensationalist spin on off the cuff remarks by company founder Eugene Kaspersky.

In a statement, it said: "Kaspersky Labs do not believe that anything serious will occur [on 26 August], although obviously it will be prepared accordingly. However, Kaspersky Labs is concerned of the use of the term 'electronic jihad' for the first time, implying that Arab hackers are thinking about a more aggressive attack." ®
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Security experts have downplayed media reports that an 'electronic jihad' aimed at Israeli websites will start on Thursday.

The reports came after the Russian news service RIA Novosti published comments made by Eugene Kaspersky, a noted antivirus researcher, saying that several websites had posted a call to arms for mass web defacements to occur on 26 August.

Security researchers stressed that calls for internet attacks have become a staple of extremist sites and usually amount to little.

Jose Nazario, attack researcher for security company Arbor Networks, said: "There has been a lot of occasions of people saying, 'hey, let's have a party and deface a lot of websites', and not much has come from it."

According to Nazario, security researchers frequently see increased online activity when attack preparations have started. There are no indications that such preparations are happening now, Nazario said Wednesday. "We honestly haven't heard anything," he said. "There have been no precursors to a large-scale attack."

Kaspersky's own company played down the portrayal of the statements of its founder on Wednesday. Antivirus-software maker Kaspersky Labs said the reports focused on what was otherwise "brief comments made yesterday at a press conference which was dedicated to cybercrime and the problems of spam."

The antivirus researcher's rebuttal to the articles and criticism from security experts appeared on, a site owned by Kaspersky Labs.

"We don't know who is behind these statements" calling for attack, Kaspersky said in the statement on He stressed that the trustworthiness of the digital call to arms could not be established. "It's not the first time the term 'electronic jihad' has been used. We've seen this before, with the focus being on sending racist emails, and defacing and hacking Israeli websites.",00.htm

I wasn't holding my breath. If its going to happen... you're not even going to know it until it does happen. IMO its going to hit hard and fast... with little or no warning.

I've been looking at logs and internet reports all day... and I saw nothing out of the ordinary...

FUD... isn't it great!?