Students at Washington State University will likely remember the Fifth of November this year, as on Friday, a hacker going by the alias "V" infiltrated the school's Academic Media Services system to interrupt classes with a video broadcast message.
The message greeted students in over two dozen classrooms on campus. The video imitates a scene from V from Vendetta, and in it the masked insurgent encourages students to break free from the "comforts of the everyday routine, the security of the familiar, the tranquility of repetition" - and to rise up against squirrels on campus.
By hacking into the university's media services, "V" was able to project the video via the school's distance-learning technology. Classroom systems were fully functional, except during the first five minutes of every hour, when the message was repeated until the hacker shut it off at 5 pm.
The university administration was quick to assure the public that no student personal or financial records were compromised. Even so, officials has seen this as a serious breach of the system, and WSU Police and other agencies are investigating, according to the student newspaper The Daily Evergreen.
The hacker remains at large, but he did send a message to the newspaper, saying that the "I have been told that the police are after me. I am and was aware of this possibility; they're only trying to do their job. If I did my job, they will have a very difficult time finding me. I just hope they realize I'm not worth the effort. There are real criminals out there; they deserve far more attention than I."
"V" said that he wanted the act to be seen as more than merely a prank, and hopes that students wake up from their apathy. But whether or not his insurrectionary message made an impact, he says there will be no further video interruptions.
But I guess we'll have to see what happens one year from now, on the Fifth of November, on the lawns of Washington State University. Beware squirrels?