Linus Tech Tips is a Canada-based YouTube channel created by Linus Sebastian in November 2008 and they cover tech-related news and reviews. At the time of writing, the channel has 15.2 million subscribers and they have uploaded more than 6,000 videos (before the channel got hacked).
The Verge reports that yesterday, the Linus Tech Tips channel experienced a security breach, during which the hacker hijacked the channel and streamed live videos before making private videos public.
The channel was later suspended, and YouTube employees are assumed to be working on its restoration. Other YouTube channels belonging to Linus Media Group, including Techquickie and TechLinked, were also breached and renamed with a focus on Tesla (yes, Elon Musk’s Tesla).
It’s uncertain how the channels were breached, but Linus acknowledged the situation and stated that the company is collaborating with Google to resolve the issue. The company aims to investigate the attack vector and enhance its YouTube account security to prevent future incidents.
He promised to provide more information on the situation in the company’s podcast, though he cautioned that it may not happen this week as the situation is still evolving.
The method by which the hacking occurred remains unclear, but it is possible that the hacker posed as a phony sponsor or advertiser to deceive the channel. The hacker may have contacted the channel under the guise of working together, then sent a sponsorship-related file that contained malware. This malware was designed to obtain cookies, remotely control computers, and ultimately take over YouTube accounts.
At the time of writing, the Linus Tech Tips channel is back online, the same goes for Techquickie and TechLinked channels.