SheWired.com, the news and entertainment website that caters mainly to LGBT women, was offline for 36 hours starting early in the morning on Aug. 4, after a hacker from China attacked their site.
“Somehow they hacked our Content Management System,” said Tracy Gilchrist, SheWired’s editor in chief. “I’m not sure exactly how, but they did a good job.”
The young website, which was launched less than a year ago, focuses mostly on entertainment and op-ed content, but is beginning to cover more news and politics—all aimed at a primarily lesbian audience.
Gilchrist doesn’t believe that her site was the hacker’s main target because they share their administrative system, which allows them to load stories, photos, and other content on to the site, with GayWired.com and a number of smaller websites.
“I don’t know if we were the target, but we were definitely collateral damage,” Gilchrist said.
While they were able to get the site up and running again by Aug. 5, SheWired continues to have intermittent problems and will be going offline this weekend in order for their tech team to fix any remaining problems and beef up their security.
SheWired will be offline for 24–48 hours, but a splash page will be put up with a link to a blog where Gilchrist will keep readers up to date on their progress.
“We’ll be coming back strong next Monday,” Gilchrist said. “We’ll have to come back and post a lot of great content so we can rebuild any dip in traffic that may have occurred.”
Although SheWired’s tech team has been unable to identify the hacker, Gilchrist believes it is simply a “tech geek with way too much time on their hands.”