Sag Harbor website hacked, say officials

A screenshot of the Village of Sag Harbor's A screenshot of the Village of Sag Harbor's website. (Sept. 10, 2013) Photo Credit: Sagharborny.gov

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Sag Harbor's village website was hacked for about a half-hour Tuesday, officials said.

Until about 11:30 a.m., when the system was restored, the site showed a picture of Osama bin Laden and a message that claimed to come from the "Islamic Electronic Army."

Sag Harbor Mayor Brian Gilbride filed a formal complaint Tuesday with village police, and Chief Tom Fabiano said his department was investigating the hacking, but had not called in federal officials.

"We're looking into it," he said, adding that while the village website had carried the hacker's message, there was no indication town records or other sensitive information had been compromised.

A spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security said any investigation would have to begin with a complaint to the FBI, which village officials have not pursued.

It was not immediately clear who had done the hacking, and even after the website was back up, attempts to use the online directory led to "fatal error" messages for a couple of hours more. Ultimately, officials brought back the photographs of the village scenery, a list of local events, and a rich history of the whaling port.

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There was no indication why Sag Harbor -- one of the most blue-collar villages in the Hamptons -- was targeted, or why it was done after Labor Day, when many of the wealthy and famous summer residents had sailed their yachts to warmer winter climates.

About an hour later, another picture of bin Laden showed up on the website of the East End Veterinary Emergency and Specialty Center in Riverhead. That hacking, too, was fixed in about an hour, and a worker at the center said they had gotten no complaints.

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