Two high-profile New Jersey Facebook pages were hijacked this week by nefarious actors. The Weird NJ page, dedicated to the oddities of New Jersey and home of the authors of the Weird NJ magazine, was hijacked this week.
“We regret to inform you that the Weird NJ Facebook page has been hacked,” the owners, commonly referred to as ‘the Marks’ said in a statemnt. “Mark Sceurman and Mark Moran, the only two authorized administrators of the Page, have been removed and can no longer manage what is posted or access any of the site’s messages. We have made multiple requests of Facebook to intervene and do something to remedy the situation, but unfortunately our complaints have thus far gone completely unacknowledged.”
The Weird NJ page has 126,000 followers.
Another page, operated by former New Jersey gubernatorial candidate Joseph Rullo was hijacked this week. Rullo has nearly 400,000 followers on his Facebook page.
In both cases, Facebook has ignored the page owners’ multiple requests to restore access. In both situations, the administrators of the page were removed by the hijackers.
Rullo today said that whoever took over his page has been posting random unrelated news stories and said that a Facebook representative did finally reach out to him. Rullo said his page is under review.
Rullo questioned the security of Facebook in light of the hijacking. Rullo’s page has been officially verified by Facebook.
As far as Weird NJ, the Marks say their requests for support continue to go unanswered.
“We have no idea who the hijacker is, or what their motive may be – so far they have posted nothing but links to some sham blog, presumably of their own making. We will keep you informed when and if the situation is resolved,” they said.
Facebook has been plagued by security and privacy concerns in recent years.
“In March 2019, a cybersecurity expert learned that Facebook was storing millions of user passwords in plain text files that were available to more than 2,000 Facebook employees. This security lapse potentially affected hundreds of millions of users,” according to a report by Team Password.
Rullo posted a video that his page was targeted last week, saying that he feels he’s being singled out because of his large following and conservative points of view by hackers.
In the meantime, Weird NJ has launched a new page to keep in communication with fans.
Facebook declined to comment on the recent hacking of high profile pages in New Jersey.