Here’s the email address they used:
Add here’s the text:
Anti-Catholic hackers wiped out our Catholic Answers forums
at www.catholic.com – and they could do it again
if we don’t upgrade our security immediately!
Dear Friend of Catholic Answers,
It’s official: When the forums section of our web site was wiped out several weeks ago, it was the work of anti-Catholic computer hackers who constantly harass us and want us OFF the Internet.
THE DANGER OF HACKERS
These hackers constantly attack our web site and our e-mail system in multiple ways.
In the past, we’ve had many problems with these hacker attacks. (As you know, a hacker is a computer expert who is able to find ways around the security of a computer system, then come in and do enormous damage.)
One time, hackers clogged our Internet capabilities by hitting us with 2,000 “spam” e-mails per second. That’s right—2,000 per second!
This came right after we launched our now-famous “Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholics” just before the 2004 elections. (Just a coincidence? Not likely.)
Our e-mail server was brought to a standstill—forcing us to use an outside service to screen all our incoming e-mails for attacks like these.
Another time, our service was flooded with pornographic e-mails.
Still other attacks have included things called “port scans”—where hackers look for weaknesses in our web sites defenses. Other times, they try to inject their malicious programs into our web sites.
And that’s not all.
These hackers also use something called “IP address spoofing”—where attackers gain unauthorized access to a computer or a network.
Sometimes they use “denial of service” attacks (one of the most difficult attacks to defend against), “sniffer” attacks, “TCP sequence prediction,” etc., etc.
The list goes on and on. It gets very confusing. And very frustrating!
The bottom line is that these hackers are out to destroy our web sites and our Internet presence!
They know how to use the Internet as a weapon.
Unless we do something significant to stop these attacks, we will continue to be vulnerable and at the mercy of these high-tech “cyber terrorists.”
That’s why I’m writing to you today. I know you care about our Catholic Answers Forums and you do not want to see them wiped out like they were several weeks ago.
Right now, we need to beef up our Internet security to the highest level possible—the same level of security that major corporations use to protect their web sites.
But that level of security and system redundancy does not come cheap.
The fact is that we’re looking at a price tag as high as $110,000.
And that is a totally unexpected expense that’s going to hit us very hard.
We have to strengthen and increase our Internet security—or we’ll be at the mercy of these relentless hackers who are out to shut down our web site and especially our forums.
Believe it or not, these misfits actually boast about their destructive handiwork.
They delight in it.
It doesn’t cost them a dime to wage their guerilla warfare via computer. Yet their destructive attacks cost their victims hundreds of thousands—if not millions—of dollars.
And most of the time, they never get caught. They know how to erase their tracks—and they cover for each other when law enforcement agencies investigate.
For example, they have special computer programs that inundate our forums web site with sexually explicit and foul-mouthed content.
They know this causes us nothing but headaches as we try to shield our members from such filth.
And yet, because the hackers have the know how to attack us, they’re relentless. Constantly changing their attacks and their M.O. Forever coming up with new ways to mess with us.
That’s why we need the highest level of Internet security available.
And we need it now.
The recent disruption of our forums—which we now know was the result of a sophisticated kind of hacker attack—will happen again and again if we don’t do something to protect ourselves now.
The reason they attack the forums is because our forums are the largest Catholic web forums in the world!
We have almost 40,000 active registered members, plus another 100,000 non-registered visitors to the forums.