- The Washington Times - Friday, April 27, 2018

A cartoon image of President Trump being punched in the face by a person wearing a wristband bearing Iran’s national colors briefly appeared on an official Harvard University website, the school’s student newspaper reported Friday.

The image of Mr. Trump being assaulted was discovered Thursday evening on the website for Harvard’s Undergraduate Council and removed the following morning, The Harvard Crimson reported.

The website was altered in the meantime to display the image of Mr. Trump being punched along with phrases including “DOWN WITH USA” and a message crediting Iran Cyber Security Group, the report said, a hacking group attributed with conducting similar stunts in the past.

The Crimson didn’t publish an image of the defacement, but Google searches for other phrases mentioned by the hackers in their report suggest that a website affiliated with the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) was compromised in a comparable manner recently to display the same phrases and a cartoon of the president being punched by a person wearing a green, white and red wristband.

“Persian Gulf Forever,” hackers wrote on both websites alongside the hashtags “#DownWithUSA” and “#DownWithEsraeil.”

Harvard student Nicholas Boucher, the council’s vice president, learned of the breach after being notified by The Crimson, the newspaper reported Friday. Mr. Boucher later said he had “countered their attack” and would work with the university’s information technology department “to see how they penetrated the Harvard network,” the report said.

Harvard University IT did not return an email seeking comment.

The Undergraduate Council is “about” to replace its website with “something much better” and “more secure,” Mr. Boucher told The Crimson.

Earlier defacements attributed to the Iranian Cyber ​​Security Company linked to a Persian-language website touting the alleged purporters as purported computer experts.

“The Iranian Cyber ​​Security Company has established its activities to promote the level of knowledge of Persian-language users and apprentices in the field of programming, network security and computer science,” the group’s website reads, according to a Google translation. “This group is not affiliated with any particular organization or organization and is managed independently. Cyber ​​Iran Security Company is subject to the laws of the Islamic Republic of Iran and fully complies with the computer crime laws.”

• Andrew Blake can be reached at ablake@washingtontimes.com.

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