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[ISN] Hacker strikes Merton Web site


By Amy Rinard
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Jan. 28, 2008

Village of Merton - Anyone visiting the village's Web site over the 
weekend found a crude, obscenity-laced home page instead of the usual 
list of emergency phone numbers and recycling information after a 
computer hacker tampered with the site.

"Oh, my gosh, that's not good," Julie Ofori-Mattmuller, village deputy 
clerk/treasurer, exclaimed as she took her first look at the Web site 
Monday morning during a phone conversation with a reporter.

"It must have gotten hacked pretty bad."

Instead of the site's usual description of the village as a "cozy 
community located in the Lake Country area," the hacked village home 
page displayed three obscene words in large letters - one flashing - and 
a large drawing of a crude hand gesture.

Among other mostly misspelled and indecipherable words on the page was a 
name, Mr. Elgaarh, which turned up in an online search as a well-known 
computer hacker possibly from Egypt. One line on the hacked Merton home 
page included the word "Egyptghost."

Ofori-Mattmuller said later Monday that after she saw the Web page, she 
immediately contacted Sandra Levins, a village resident hired to handle 
the Web site, to report the hacking.

Levins, who did not return phone calls Monday, took down the site for a 
time. It was restored to its usual look by midafternoon.

Ofori-Mattmuller said the site appeared Friday as it usually does. A 
reporter saw the vulgar, tampered-with home page Saturday.

"I don't think it was there that long," she said, noting that no 
residents called to report a problem with the Web site.

She said she can't think of why any computer hacker, especially one from 
another country, would want to target the Web site of a village of about 
2,500 people in Wisconsin.

"We've had no controversial issues here; I don't know why anyone would 
want to do this," she said.

"Snowplowing is the biggest issue we usually have. We're a quiet little 

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