Hussain, also going under the name of Abu Hussain al-Britani, was a British man who joined ISIS a few years back and helped its Syrian branch create a hacking division, commonly known and referred to as the CyberCaliphate.
Prior to joining ISIS, Hussain had a claim to fame after he hacked and stole the online address book of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. This happened in 2012 and Hussain spent six months in jail for his actions. A year later, he moved to Syria to join ISIS.
While a leader of the CyberCaliphate, he spent most of the time recruiting new ISIS members via social networks but was also involved in the creation of various hacking tools and training new hackers within the group.
Hussain leaked data form 1,400 US military servicemen
His most successful hacking operation was this August, when he managed to leak the data of several US service members belonging to the Air Force, Marine Corps, NASA, FBI, State Department and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
The data was put on Twitter, with Hussain and other ISIS members urging “lone wolves” to analyze it and carry out attacks on military personnel.
According to online reports, the US military used tracking technologies embedded with today’s smartphones and mobile applications, and managed to locate and kill Hussain while in his car in front of his house.
He wasn’t a top target, but he was a top target
US Army representatives denied Hussain was a top target, and other security experts agree.
“He wasn’t a serious threat. He was most likely a nuisance hacker,” said Adam Meyers, vice president of cyber-security firm CrowdStrike for Jerusalem Post. “It was his involvement in recruitment, communications and other ancillary support that would have made him a target.”
This may be true seeing that the IS Hacking Division never carried out severe and crippling attacks on the US IT infrastructure, doing all their damage via Twitter, but this may have all changed when Hussain leaked the batch of personal details on US military members.
He may not have been a top target when considering his hacking skills, but he became one when he tried to trigger a terrorist attack on US soil via his “lone wolves” remark.