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2015- The year in review: Part 1


PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK

JANUARY

Hacked by Mecca

John Jantak

A cyber-attack by an Islamist extremist group called Middle East Cyber Army (MECA) hijacked the town of Terrasse-Vaudreuil’s domain name and replaced the home page with a propaganda page filled with jihadist rants.

The hack was first discovered just after 9 p.m., January 22, by a YLJ journalist who visited the website by chance to being preparing a story on the upcoming inauguration of the town’s new fire hall scheduled for Monday, January 26.

A page immediately popped up with flashing words that displayed the message “HACKED BY MECA”.

The town finally regained control of its website almost 11 hours later. Though the story garnered national attention, it was determined that rather than being targeted, the town merely had a particular vulnerability in its site that allowed the hack.

“We have a private firm that takes care of our website server which is located off-site. It has nothing to do with the service provided by our municipality,” said DG Ron Kelley. “There was no confidential information that was compromised.”

PHOTO BY CARMEN MARIE FABIO

Pay hike for Beaconsfield councillors

Carmen Marie Fabio

News that Beaconsfield elected officials voted late in 2014 to increase their remuneration by 40 per cent – the first increase implemented in the town in almost eight years – was met with mixed reaction by residents and invoked an ongoing email debate.

The increase put Beaconsfield at about the middle of the earning field for 22 comparable cities across the province but didn't assuage the anger of citizens who said, “You all got into this position knowing exactly what your remuneration was.”

Council said it worked out to two raises in 18 years and, going forward, salaries would be adjusted on a yearly basis.

PHOTO BY JOHN JANTAK

FEBRUARY