FBI investigating Web hackers

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Selma Times-Journal

The FBI wants the hackers that have linked porn to the city&8217;s Web site.

Bruce A. Williams, director of the City of Selma&8217;s Information Technology department, said hackers used the city&8217;s browser name to link to sites unrelated to the City of Selma. A hacker is a highly proficient computer programmer who seeks to gain unauthorized access to systems.

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The city&8217;s Web address, which is www.selma-al.gov, would appear in search engine lists with other letters or characters attached, sending browsers to pornographic sites.

The FBI has stayed in touch with city officials since January, according to Williams. Angela Tobon, spokeswoman for the FBI office in Mobile, declined to comment, saying the agency does not talk about investigations.

The city&8217;s site was taken offline for a short time, but is back up, and the bogus links have been removed from search engines.

Williams said the FBI has conducted an investigation to find the hacker since November, the first time it occurred.

Web sites in the United States, United Kingdom and Austria were attacked in January for no more than 15 minutes. A Web site that monitors hacking, Attrition.org, said the attack was one of the largest and most systematic defacements of worldwide government servers.

Officials did not say if the attacks are thought to be from the same source.