Gun Control Group Has Web Domain Stolen by Hacker : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Jun 20, 2000 - 08:07 PM

Gun Control Group Has Web Domain Stolen by Pro-Gun Hacker By D. Ian Hopper Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - A nonprofit gun-control group had its Web site defaced and Web address hijacked by a pro-gun hacker, according to the group and independent registration records. "If you take my guns, I still have my computer. VPC just got shot in the head," the defaced Violence Policy Center site read.

"This is the most readily available public face of the VPC," Josh Sugarmann, the group's executive director, said Tuesday. "Now they're (site visitors) being greeted by a picture of bombs, a skull and crossbones and obscenities."

In addition, all VPC's e-mail was being rerouted to the hacker.

VPC reported the incident, which occurred Monday, to the FBI and asked domain name registrar Network Solutions Inc. in Herndon, Va., to restore its Web site address. Brian O'Shaughnessy, a spokesman for Network Solutions, said the process would take 12 to 24 hours.

On public Internet registration records, the "" name is registered to a Ted Torian, which is possibly an alias, at an address in Los Angeles. He said he has no knowledge of that name, and though his group has an office in Los Angeles, it's not at that address. The phone numbers listed on the registration records were disconnected.

When Jeff Cronin, spokesman for the policy group Common Cause, e-mailed a colleague at VPC, the hacker replied to him. Cronin provided the e-mail to The Associated Press.

The reply read, in part: "Just keep the URLs comin dude! Ha ha. I get all mail for this domain." URL, or uniform resource locator, is a Web address.

The person who sent the reply used the anonymous Yahoo! mail service, but an Internet address hidden in the e-mail shows that the person accessed the Yahoo! Web mail account through a computer at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.

B.K. DeLong, a staff member of, which logs Web defacements, said that it's likely the culprit is at university, "but it's hard to tell for sure without seeing the logs."

The university did not return calls for comment Tuesday.

-- Martin Thompson (, June 20, 2000

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