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Herrin police, airport fall victim briefly to pornographic web hack

Posted on 11/5/2019, 3:31 PM

HERRIN -- The Herrin Police Department says it has no idea how a pornographic image came up when anyone Googled the department online, but the image is now gone and it never actually was on the department's website.

The police department felt compelled to issue a statement Sunday afternoon after the image resulted in a flood of phone calls to the department, which began to interfere with the department's ability to answer 911 calls.

According to the statement, the police have no idea how the photos were posted to the site but made contact with Google to have the photos removed.

Officials with the Herrin PD have reached out to a cybercrime specialist to help identify those responsible.

Several other area businesses and organizations also fell victim to the hack including the Energy Police Department, Veterans Airport of Southern Illinois, and at least three individual business.

Calls to the Herrin police were not returned as of Monday afternoon.

Doug Kimmel, director of Veterans Airport of Southern Illinois said on Monday afternoon that he was unaware of the misdeed until a phone call from this newspaper.

"We have someone who manages our website," he said. "I haven't heard anything from that person, either."

Kimmel said he will continue to check on the matter and monitor any breach.

The hack did not appear to affect the individual websites, only the Google search information.

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