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DEW Could Be Second Hacking Victim

11:20 PM, Dec 22, 2012   |    comments
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Columbia, SC (WLTX) - A second South Carolina state agency could be under attack by online hackers.

Department spokeswoman Adrienne Fairwell says the agency is looking into a "website defacement".

Saturday, on the home page on the website for the Department of Employment and Workforce, an image claimed the site had been hacked.

The image posted on the home page specifically stated 'South Carolina' and says 'This site was hacked'.  The web browser shows the page popped up for the web address '', the website for the SC Department of Employment and Workforce.

At the bottom of the image a  YouTube link is listed.

News 19 has reached out to the State Law Enforcement Division and Governor Haley's office.  So far, they have not provided any information about the images online, but say they are investigating the incident.

Department of Employment and Workforce Statement:

At 6:30 pm on December 22, 2012, a malicious user defaced the agency's website, DEW.SC.GOV. The agency's division of information technology immediately took the website offline to remove the defacement. There was no personal identifying information compromised. The DEW.SC.GOV website contains public information about the agency and the federal programs that it administers. Simply put, the user replaced one DEW website, the main page, with a message. This is commonly referred to as "website defacement."

Website defacement is an attack on a website that changes the visual appearance of the site or a webpage. This can be compared graffiti on a wall.

"DEW has multiple layers of security infrastructure in place and this layered approach allows for overlapping lines of defense working together to protect agency assets," said Neil Adcox, interim assistant executive director for Information Technology. 

Personal Identifying Information and other sensitive information are protected by these multiple layers of security infrastructure and none of this information was accessed, released or lost.

"We take this and any attempts to obtain personal identifying information and sensitive data very seriously," said DEW Executive Director Abraham J. Turner. "Due to multiple levels of security the agency has in place, a more serious event was averted. We will continue to monitor, identify and eliminate vulnerabilities."

 Adrienne R. Fairwell, APR

Director of Information Services

SC Department of Employment and Workforce


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