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Official SBC statement from Chris Chapman regarding site blockage

 

Statement from Chris Chapman, SBC Executive Committee director of information systems, regarding the blocking of the SBC website by the U.S. Department of Defense

 

April 26, 2013

 

“The recent situation impeding access to our website for some was aggravated by a misunderstanding of a term familiar to those in the information technology field. That term is’'hostile content.’

To technical administrators, it simply means some sort of vulnerability or virus. It might not even be an actively harmful element, but simply an exploitable or potentially exploitable condition.

We now live in an age where defending against or removing ‘hostile content’ is a daily undertaking, especially for any organization that maintains multiple Internet servers.

As one might expect, the wall of defense for the computer systems of our armed forces is at an optimum level. We appreciate the fact that it goes beyond recognizing invading viruses and includes closing down harmful possibilities.

This most recent challenge fits into that latter category, and has been dealt with satisfactorily. Unfortunately, SBC.net has joined the ranks of other major organizations that are targets for hackers, detractors and activists.

Those engaged in destructive creativity will exploit the continuing development of new technologies to cause new harm and threats of harm continually, so this latest challenge is, for us, just another one of the sort we deal with every day.

The fact that it ‘made the news’ was certainly a distinguishing feature, but the attempted attack was not all that unusual. Certainly, having adequate virus protection is necessary for us all, but visitors to SBC.net need not worry about harm from visiting our site to any greater degree than they should from any other credible and well-established site.

If any user suspects a hacking attempt, vulnerability, or virus, or even if there are accessibility issues, we welcome being informed by email. You may contact our IT division directly by emailing us at Webmaster@sbc.net.