Update: This story was updated on May 6, 2015 to correct the link to the Autism Foundation of Tennessee’s website.
NASHVILLE,Tenn. (WKRN) – A Tennessee non-profit’s website, based out of Nashville, has been hacked by a group supporting ISIS.
The Autism Foundation of Tennessee’s website was hacked by a group named “Team System Dz” over the weekend.
The group replaced the non-profit’s website with a mostly black home screen and a message that read in part, “I am Muslim & I love jihad. I love ISIS.”
According to multiple reports, Team System Dz has been responsible for over 5,000 website hacks over the past several years.
“We’re seeing a lot of small businesses right now are being targeted by threat actors looking for vulnerabilities in their existing infrastructure,” FBI Special Agent Scott Augenbaum explained, adding, “A lot of these targets right now are small businesses that are using free software to maintain their website.”
News 2 asked Augenbaum if the group is actually tied to or supported by the terror group.
“I would say it’s an ongoing investigation,” he said. “We can’t talk about that.”
Autismfoundationoftennessee.org has restored its homepage and there is no mention of the incident on their site.
Augenbaum said he suggests people not visit websites that have been hacked.
“We have seen cases where the bad guys have installed malicious code on a website. So I would stay really with the major websites that are out there,” Augenbaum said.
Non-profit and charitable websites have been a frequent target of the hackers and Augenbaum said it’s unfortunate because it knocks those websites offline, which is how non-profits take donaitons.
“When this happens, it’s really detrimental. The larger organizations can survive, but a lot of times the smaller organizations, it drives people away,” he said.
News 2 contacted Autism Foundation of Tennessee and heard back May 2.
Executive Director Rhonda Manous wrote, “Obviously, we are upset and angry over this. We are a small, non-profit organization that simply treats children and families affected by autism. It is unthinkable to us that a group would target such a population. We are working with our website host to try to rectify this matter. “