The US General Services Administration (GSA), a federal agency that oversees government Web sites, took steps earlier this week to shut down California state government’s Internet and email service after a hacker apparently was able to route incoming Internet traffic to Web sites that contained the domain name ca.gov to a porn Website.
The hacked web sites included ones operated by the Superior Court of Madera County and Brookhaven, a US Department of Energy lab that specializes in nuclear and high-energy research. The Madera County court site was forwarded to a site containing ads for porn and Viagra, while visitors to the Brookhaven site were redirected to pornographic Web servers, according to IDG News Service.
The shut down process, however, was not completed, after California state officials urged the GSA to reverse its decision to take offline all state websites bearing the "ca.gov" suffix.
During the shut down episode, state officials claimed that no essential or emergency services or database were affected.
“We have contingencies for those kinds of things,” Aaron McLear, a spokesman for Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger told Sign On San Diego.
Jim Hanacek, spokesperson for California Department of Technology Services (CDTS), told InternetNews that GSA shut down California's domain apparently without first consulting any authorities in the state. "It was like using a shotgun to kill a flea," he said.
The GSA on Thursday apologized for the inconvenience, but it defended its right to remove .gov sites from the Internet. However, it says it would try to find a more targeted solution for similar problems in the future.
"GSA is responsible for the integrity of all the .gov Web sites it manages," the agency told Reuters. "The potential exposure of pornographic material to the citizens and tens of thousands of children in California was a primary motivator for GSA to request immediate corrective action."
“It is important to quickly stop potentially harmful damage to federal, state and local Web sites from those who have no love for our country," GSA added.
[Via - Blorge.Com]
PickyDomains.com is world's first risk-free naming service. We can come up with a great domain, name or slogan for you (like we already did for 1500+ clients) for $50 and the best part - you pay ONLY if you like our work, so there is no risk involved.