The Lincoln County website, linked to a site selling drugs from Canada, went offline Monday evening so it would no longer connect to the drug company. Lincoln County's information technologist Dustin Crowe told the Bulletin that the site was rebuilt to eliminate a hack that was linked to search engines.
He said the new site will be free of the bug.
Crowe said the Lincoln County website itself was never compromised. A viewer could always see all the county offices and information by going directly to the county site, but hackers were able to link search engines such as Google and Yahoo so someone would go to websites that offered prescription drugs -- first from India, then from Canada.
The drug sites claimed to offer generic forms of Viagra, Levitra and Cialis for erectile dysfunction, plus a generic form of the antibiotic ciprofloxin, among others.
From a Yahoo search, the words "Lowest price Viagra" and "Viagra Shipped" appeared next to the search bar after "Lincoln County Nebraska" was entered.
However, from there the county website opened as it should. Also, copying and pasting the web address www.co.lincoln.ne.us into a browser window circumvented the hack and led to the county website.
The county website has been reconstructed and search engines will not have the false link, Crowe said.
County Clerk Rebecca Rossell said the hack was reported in November.
Crowe said the hack was deeply embedded so it took weeks to correct it. He said the county site basically had to be recreated by the state hosting company in Lincoln.