HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - HPD has confirmed one of their databases containing information about the public has been hacked. Officials say anyone who has ever signed up for an "HPD alert" using their email address or phone number has been exposed. They say this includes more than 3,500 entries listing individual's full names.
The group that is claiming responsibility appears to be affiliated with an "anti-American" cyber-attack campaign targeting U-S financial and governmental institutions.
A list of more than two dozen HPD personnel names, phone numbers, email addresses and log-in passwords popped up on several hacker-affiliated websites overnight.
The group taking credit for the website breach is "X-Blackerz Inc". They posted a link to the leaked information on their Facebook page using the hashtag "#OpUSA", which according to their webpage is an on-going cyber-attack campaign coordinated through Twitter and sites like Pastebin.
According to an image that has been circulating online, #OpUSA is quote: "for the children of Iraq, Gaza, Pakistan, Afghanistan and all victims of American drone violence".
The photo, which features a skull and the American flag, goes on to say quote: "Hurt the only thing the American Government cares about money". "X-Blackers" claims to have hacked into at least 100 other U.S. websites, though no other police department's appear to have been impacted at this time.
Local cyber security expert and former Honolulu Police detective, Chris Duque, says these hacks should be taken seriously.
"This puts everyone at risk. Personal information is much more valuable these days than the actual money in your pocket, in your purse, or in the bank— information is the new commodity," said Duque.
"Everyone is vulnerable - everyone is vulnerable to some kind of cyber attack," Duque explained, before describing how difficult it can be to catch the people who are responsible.
"Unfortunately, it's a see-saw battle. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. We're trying to keep up, but it's hard because of the limited resources the government has versus the bad guys. The bad guys really have unlimited resources, because all their resources they steal," said Duque.
The Honolulu Police Department released the following statement Monday evening:
"The Honolulu Police Department announced today that its "HPD Alerts" database was accessed by an unauthorized person or persons this weekend, and subscribers' names, phone numbers, and email addresses were compromised. HPD Alerts was a pilot program to provide breaking information to the public. It was recently discontinued due to technical problems not associated with the cyberattack.
The HPD has since removed the database and implemented additional measures to protect the information. At no time did the breach affect police services.
For more information, subscribers should contact firstname.lastname@example.org"