The UBC Food Services website was defaced last night by hackers claiming to be part of Anonymous, a “hackivist” group best known for their high-profile attacks on government and corporate websites.
Chris Yong, senior IT manager for Student Housing and Hospitality, said the website was altered around 9:30 p.m. Sunday, August 25. He became aware of the intrusion around 11 p.m. that night. The website was back to normal around 9 a.m. on Monday.
The site was replaced with an Insane Clown Posse-themed page, displaying images from the band, an embedded music video and the phrase “I’m down wit the Clown til I’m dead in the ground.” According to the hacked page’s text, UBC Food Services was targeted for “never feeding Canadian Juggalos at UBC College” — “Juggalo” being a term that refers to fans of Insane Clown Posse.
The page credited @ShadowDXS, a Twitter account held by Branndon Pike, for hacking the page. Pike denied executing the attack.
“I did not deface any site. Ask someone else,” he responded when asked for comment on the website’s defacement. His handle has been previously implicated in attacks by Anonymous; Pike claimed in an interview with Fox News that he had expressed that he wasn’t a supporter of the group’s actions and this made him a target.
Yong said website became vulnerable on Friday after a new employee updated the site, but forgot to re-implement some security measures.
“We have a new tech and I guess we put the procedure in place to make sure that after he makes changes he hardens the site after. It’s a training issue,” said Yong.
Yong said the hacking was likely done by a group in the United States using a plugin that scans websites looking for vulnerabilities.
Yong said that the information page for UBC Food Services was the only site of many on the same server that was affected. He said the hacker was not able to access any personal information.
“Our student portal is severely hardened,” said Yong. “There’s no was they’re getting into that one.”