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Sheriff's departments experience social media troubles

Two area sheriffs offices saw the ugly side of social media this week. One hacked, the other flooded with calls from a YouTuber's followers.

Posted: Nov 12, 2021 10:46 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Two area sheriffs offices saw the ugly side of social media this week.

One hacked, the other flooded with calls from a YouTuber's followers.

Area county sheriff's offices have had a busier week than usual.

Down in Clay county, the sheriff's office there has enlisted the FBI to track down a hacker after its Facebook page was taken over.

“I've gotten a lot of 'Oh man I'm so sorry from other departments,” Sarah Boyd, Sheriff's office spokesperson said.

On Monday, someone hacked the county sheriff's Facebook page and posted images of the chairman of the Chinese communist party with the words "destroy America."

People immediately called the county to notify them of the hack.

“We were able to recover the account at about 7:30 a.m. so it was hacked for about 4 hours,” Boyd said.

The sheriff's office spokesperson says the scariest part is they don't know how they could have prevented it.

"They were able to defeat that which was very concerning," Boyd said.

Boyd says in addition to the FBI, Facebook has also promised to investigate the hack.

In the meantime they've changed all their passwords.

Then up in Harrison county, the sheriff's office had to shut down its non-emergency line this week.

"The Sheriff's office does dispatch for police, fire, EMS. As well as takes calls after hours for things like utilities, electricity, gas. Things like that so we have a lot of stuff that rolls through our dispatch center,” Sheriff Trevor Place, Harrison County Sheriff said.

A popular YouTuber with thousands of followers, posted his arrest by Bethany police to his page.

His followers then made 1000s of calls to the county call center.

The sheriff says he had to shut down the non-emergency line so dispatch staff could focus on their main job, emergencies.

"We are still here 24/7 to answer phones and get you the help you need,” Sheriff Place said.

The sheriff says the non-emergency line is still down but he hopes to get it back up later this week.

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Clouds will slowly build back into the area today. Clouds will linger overnight as a cold front moves through and the winds will pick up out of the northwest at 5 to 15 mph. That front will bring us a breezy northerly wind for your Wednesday as well as some cold temperatures. Highs will struggle to warm into the lower 20 on Wednesday, but wind chills will only feel like the single digits during the afternoon. Thursday will be the coldest day of the week. Wind chills still start out sub zero Thursday morning, with temperatures only making it into the teens by the afternoon. Temperatures will slowly start to recover by the weekend.
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