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DuPage Election Website Attacked By Hackers

Recently, the Election Commission of the county was warned to a post under the qualification list of potential voters that read, "you may not be a homosexual". After some time, an online attacker intruded again and added one more line that read, "Your grandfather must have voted".

An academic counselor, Michael Funtera, at Roosevelt University, was searching the Election Commission Website of the DuPage County on October 26, 2006. Suddenly he saw the line that shocked him completely.

One of his colleagues called the commission and warned them about the problem. Both fake entries have been removed and the officials are now trying to find out if any laws have been broken. The county officials informed that files of voter registration and vote-counting system for coming elections were not fiddled with.

Robert Saar, Director, Election Commission, told the 'Chicago Tribune' that these kinds of acts were meant to frighten and excite voters and the matter became serious. The attack neither affected files of voter registration that were protected by additional firewalls nor the vote-counting system of commission that was not connected to any other system or Internet.

Hacked information were only a few links from the main page of the site and would be missed easily unless someone was searching the voter information segment. Funtera said that he came upon the line when he was looking for his place of polling.

The lines were added to qualification list in the registration segment. This portion had information like the voter must be a US citizen; the age of voter should be 18 years etc.

Saar reported that the technical experts have been attempting to "reverse engineer" the hack so that they could determine its origin. The lawyer of the commission has also been trying to find out if any laws have been broken. An Internet security expert and associate professor, DePaul University, Jacob Furst, said that as public can easily access the internet sites, they are susceptible to hacking.

He added that Website mutilation have been the most usual type of hacking. He further added that government sites have been the most common aim of hackers, as they want to spread the distrust for government in public.

» SPAMfighter News - 11/1/2006

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