DailyTech reports about one of the first known assaults of hackers that caused physical harm on victims. A forum run by the Epilepsy Foundation was the victim of a ruthless attack, the hackers ran a script that generated hundreds of messages with flashing GIF files:
Ken Lowenberg, senior director of web and print publishing at the Epilepsy Foundation states, "We are seeing people affected. It's fortunately only a handful. It's possible that people are just not reporting yet -- people affected by it may not be coming back to the forum so fast."
One pattern sensitive epileptic, RyAnne Fultz, a 33-year old mother who regularly uses the group, was a victim of Sunday's attack. After initially clicking an innocent sounding post, her screen was filled with a large pattern of blinking squares. She says she "locked up". Fultz who works IT Coeur d'Alene, Idaho explained, "I don't fall over and convulse, but it hurts. I was on the phone when it happened, and I couldn't move and couldn't speak."
Fortunately, Fultz was rescued by her 11-year-old son who came into the room and forced her gaze away from the screen and killed the process. Fultz emphasized how bad a seizure the attack caused, stating, "It was a spike of pain in my head. And the lockup, that only happens with really bad ones. I don't think I've had a seizure like that in about a year."