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BART anticipates more cyber attacks from 'Anonymous' hackers

August 15, 2011 |  7:33 am

BART website
Officials at the Bay Area Rapid Transit system, whose website was hit by a group of hackers known as Anonymous, say more cyber attacks are possible.

BART spokesman Jim Allison said the agency anticipated further attempts to disrupt its online presence and that it had brought in experts from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for assistance. The FBI was also investigating.

BART was attempting to contact more than 2,400 customers Sunday afternoon to inform them that their personal information had been obtained and published by a group of hackers.

The security breach was perpetrated by the hacker-activist group Anonymous, which launched cyber attacks Sunday against BART and the Fullerton Police Department in retaliation for deadly confrontations between police and homeless men.

The cyber attack against the Fullerton police did not appear to be successful, but officials at the San Francisco-area mass transit authority were forced to shut down MyBART.org, a marketing website designed to encourage riders to use the system for travel to leisure events.

The hacker group posted the names, home addresses, email addresses and phone numbers of thousands of Bay Area residents, but a BART spokesman said the website held no sensitive financial information.

"We are in the process of contacting our customers to offer advice and extend regrets that this has happened," said Allison.

Allison said the FBI was investigating the breach, and Department of Homeland Security experts were advising the agency during the crisis.

The group targeted BART after the fatal shooting of a homeless man last month and because the agency shut down cellphone service in its trains and stations during a demonstration last week over the incident.

The threat to hack the Fullerton police website was in response to the death of Kelly Thomas during a confrontation with officers last month. The city deployed its information technology staff to secure computers and electronic communications and to monitor the systems for intrusions.

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-- Garrett Therolf and Richard Winton

Image: Screenshot of BART website on Sunday

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