University Instagram account hacked

To celebrate the ringing in of a new year, Baker University’s Instagram account surprised its followers with shocking pictures. As students began to report back to campus, the surprise posts gave the start of Interterm a light and comical tone.

With one of the photos featuring a provocative image of SpongeBob Square Pants and a woman dressed in a scandalous Sandy Cheeks outfit, the image was received humorously by the public and the apparent hacking of the account came into question.

In addition to SpongeBob’s guest appearance on the account, other inappropriate memes were featured as well as a link to in the University’s bio. While the posts were only up for a few minutes before taken down by the University, they were out long enough to spur talk among those who viewed them.

The account is used to update followers of the functions within Baker. With posts focused on celebrating the success of students and faculty and updating followers on upcoming events on campus, the sudden change in content caught the eye of those active on the site at the time.

While it was obvious that the account had been hacked, the University took specific measures to ensure that there would be no more inappropriate posts in the future.

Vice President of Advancement Danielle Jones Rease said, “This type of attack is difficult to avoid. We immediately implemented a crisis communications plan which included communications to key staff members in technology and web management.  We then deleted the inappropriate content and modified security to the site that was hacked.”

With alterations to the security of the account, the University plans to continue regulation of future postings to avoid further occurrences.

The student population at Baker University’s Baldwin City campus responded to the startling posts as expected, finding the pictures amusing.

Senior Megan Porche was witness to the original postings and said, “My mom was the first to tell me about the posts that had been made. We both knew immediately that the account had been hacked but enjoyed the pictures while they lasted.”

Others responded accordingly, taking screenshots and sharing them amongst one another even after the original posts had been removed.

After the pictures had been erased, the necessary steps to avoiding a future mishap have been put into place, but not before those connected to the account could enjoy the new year ‘s surprise. This apparent “load of barnacles” has set the tone for 2019 — a new year, full of surprises.