Update: Council candidate’s website ‘hacked,’ repeatedly vanishes

Debate photo - news in santa clarita ca
Santa Clarita Councilman, and candidate, TimBen Boydston (foreground, facing camera) at a recent debate.

Computer glitch or Election Day Eve dirty trick?

Whatever the case, the campaign website for Santa Clarita Councilman TimBen Boydston suddenly went blank for about four hours – and then again intermittently — on Monday, a day ahead of when voters will choose the winners of two expiring seats on the city’s governing body.

“To whoever hacked my website and took it down…..That was a very unkind thing to do,’’ Boydston posted on Facebook around 2:30 p.m.

“In the meantime while we are fixing it, if you are on facebook you can contact me through PM (personal message).’’

Boydston said he first noticed the problem just before noon Monday afternoon, when he clicked on the website — https://timben.com/ — and got a blank page.

It stayed that way until around 3:30 p.m., after his web service seemed to remedy the issue. But then later Monday evening, the site was intermittently working and blank.

“It’s really disturbing to me that someone would do this,’’ an agitated Boydston told The Signal.

“Part of my grassroots campaign is getting people to click on my website and find out more about me. It’s a critical part of my campaign. I think somebody else also realized that. I can’t think of another reason why a perfectly good website, with no problems for eight years, suddenly goes down a day before the election.’’

Boydston’s technical adviser for the website, Robert Gardner of Santa Clarita Web & IT, told The Signal he believed it was a hack job.

“There’s something unscrupulous going on … something crazy going on,’’ Gardner said.

“We took a look. There was an odd file that had been uploaded earlier today. We removed it, but something keeps uploading. We think somebody has infiltrated his website through a back door, which makes this a blank page.’’

Boydston is one of 11 candidates running for one of the two expiring four-year seats.

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