Hackers get in the holiday spirit by robbing charity

“Bah humbug!” cry hackers as they pilfer charity funds from the Utah Association for Intellectual Disabilities (UAID) right before the holidays.

The charity first realized something was wrong when it hadn’t received email applications from volunteers for the holiday season. UAID claims it usually receives an influx of volunteer applications and requests for help as the season ramps up in November.

Each holiday season, UAID helps 1,200 to 1,400 adults who are intellectually disabled, many of whom don’t have family members and are living in assisted living situations. Techs working for the charity attempted to gain control of the email accounts, which had been compromised and hijacked, but the attacking parties involved quickly regained control and locked out future attempts to regain control.

The director of UAID isn’t concerned about the financial losses. Instead, she said the real loss was the email account, as the charity now isn’t sure who needed help for the holidays.

In total, about $5,000 was stolen and the charity’s PayPal account have been seized. UAID was asking for donations through its new phone number 385-887-4145 as it tried to recover before the holidays got into full swing.

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