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Students Hospitalized After Hackers Send Horrifying Pictures

Graphic Attack

Users of a UC Irvine student-run Discord server fell victim to a horrifying cyberattack.

As CBS reports, nearly 3,000 current and former UC Irvine students were sent extremely graphic and violent content.

This content was reportedly so appalling that it sent several students to the hospital.

"I heard about a lot of people vomiting, a lot of people crying," computer science and engineering graduate student Alina Kim told CBS.

"The videos included human corpses being sexually violated," Kim added in an interview with NBC. Other videos included disturbing footage of people hurting animals and children.

According to the report, hackers infiltrated 30 Discord channels and demanded a ransom of just $1,000 — a shocking incident that highlights how easy it is to weaponize horrific content to target online communities.

Fight Back

In response, students jumped into action.

"Once we realized how widespread the issue was, we started reaching out to as many people as we could," Kim told CBS. "Made a group chat where we coordinated our efforts."

Thanks to some clever uses of bots that automatically rooted out the hackers and blocked them on Discord, Kim and her fellow students identified a whopping 400 accounts associated with the attack.

According to Kim, some of the perpetrators were part of an "alt-right transphobic hate group."

In a statement to Gizmodo, Discord claimed that it had removed responsible accounts, stating that "our Community Guidelines prohibit the uploading or sharing of any material depicting real violence, gore, or animal cruelty, and we take action when we see this kind of behavior, including by removing users, shutting down servers, and engaging with authorities."

Worse yet, UC Irvine appears to be only one of several universities being targeted, according to CBS.

Despite their best efforts, graphic images keep making it through the filters.

But Kim is far from giving up.

"I guess our message is: You chose the wrong school to mess with," she told NBC.

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