MI6, the legendary British Secret Intelligence Service, and GCHQ, the British intelligence agency responsible for monitoring communications, proved that though they’re serious about security, they still have a sense of humour. When plans for the release of a web-circulated magazine that would include instructions on how to make a bomb were uncovered last year, they could have taken action in several ways. The cheeky choice of response from the home of the fictional James Bond?
The Brits hacked the magazine and replaced such lovely articles as “What to Expect in Jihad” and “Make a bomb in the Kitchen of your Mom” and inserted a code that would appear as random characters when downloaded and viewed. Those characters were actually a page from Ellen DeGeneres’s website listing recipes for “The Best Cupcakes in America,” turning the content of al-Qaeda’s recipes from potentially deadly to definitely delicious.
Al-Qaeda has since been able to reissue the magazine, and has published 4 issues since, aimed at potential “lone-wolf” terrorists in English-speaking countries. A source for the newspaper The Telegraph reported to them that British intelligence would continue to target sites publishing the magazine online “because it is viewed as such a powerful propaganda tool.” Maybe next time they can teach the aspiring jihadist to make an orange julius instead of homemade napalm.