City web site hacked

By Robert Frank

Laval’s municipal web site came under attack by a malicious internet hacker group, Nov. 24.

According to Laval Police, security measures previously put in place by the city’s computer boffins largely foiled the attempt at cybermischief.

“The web site was slowed by the attack, but never closed,” Sgt. Frédéric Jean told The Suburban.

“The firewall and security measures were somewhat effective,” he said in an interview. “It never shut down and no confidential information was compromised.”

In contrast, visitors to the Ottawa police department web site saw a dancing banana image for a little while.

A group of hackers that calls itself Aerith claimed responsibility for having vandalized the sites, two of a number of government web sites that it attacked.

They reportedly targeted the sites in retaliation for the May 8 arrest of a 16-year-old Ottawa boy who made mayhem by placing fake emergency calls across North America.

The youth allegedly targeted six Laval locations as part of his mayhem, including three false alarms directed at Georges Vanier High School, one at Carrefour Laval and two at Laval residences.

Police told The Suburban at the time that the alleged attacks were a new internet phenomenon called swatting. The objective is to instigate a fake emergency call with the objective of getting local police to needlessly deploy their special operations squads, known as SWAT teams.

As reported in The Suburban, investigators are weighing possible links that the Ottawa boy might have had with a 15-year-old Laval boy who was charged with the scares here, and a 16-year-old Milton, Ontario, boy whom local police arrested May 2, and charged with a similar alleged infraction that targeted a local high school.

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