Mike Schuler
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October 7, 2014


The website of the Massachusetts Maritime Academy was targeted Monday by a group of hackers identifying themselves as the Moroccan Islamic Union-mail.

The attack was first noticed Monday afternoon at about 1:30 p.m. when visitors to the school’s webmail were redirected to a website run by Islamic extremists, according to a statement from the school’s President, Rear Admiral Richard Gurnon. The landing page reportedly showed an image of an American soldier’s grave with Arabic writing underneath.

The school’s website was restored, but was again attacked Monday night, President Gurnon said in an follow up email to students and faculty Tuesday morning. Update: It appears that the site was hacked for a third time Tuesday evening.

President Gurnon insists that no personal data was comprised in the attacks and the school has notified the Department of Homeland Security of the incident.

“I want to reiterate that no MMA data was accessed, no information from our other files was taken,” President Gurnon said in the email. “We have strengthened the protections to our other sites. Although difficult for us to verify, this group appears to be from overseas.”

Rumor on campus is that the hackers were trying to target the U.S. Naval Academy or possibly the U.S. transportation system through the Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, N.Y., gCaptain is told.

October represents the Department of Homeland Security’s National Cyber Security Awareness Month 2014, an effort to increase the awareness and understanding of basic cybersecurity practices and the role the public plays in keeping cyberspace safe and secure. The campaign reminds us to set strong passwords, update browsers, limit the amount of personal information we share online, and to be mindful of what we are clicking on online.

Located in Buzzards Bay, M.A., Massachusetts Maritime Academy is one of six state maritime academies in the U.S.

Image (c) Shutterstock/Balefire

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