Hacker denied access to town’s bank accounts 

MOUNT DESERT — A hacker’s attempt to gain access to the town’s bank accounts last week was thwarted by Bar Harbor Bank & Trust Company and town Treasurer Kathi Mahar. 

“On March 16, I got a call from the bank saying they had a request from me to give someone online access to our accounts,” Mahar said. They thought that was unusual because we usually talk face to face.” 

Mahar had not sent any such request. 

“So, the bank’s security and fraud people looked into it, and our IT person at Haley Ward [the town’s technical consulting firm] went onto our system and discovered the hack had occurred on March 15,” Mahar said. “Then, on the 16thfour emails were sent out to different people at the bank.” 

Mahar said the emails looked legitimate. 

Kudos to Bar Harbor Bank for following protocol to verify online access information,” she said.  

“So, the hacker didn’t get access to our bank accounts. We didn’t lose any money. We just lost time and a sense of security that we’ve had.  

“But out of an abundance of caution we decided to close our accounts and open new ones. And our security has been bumped up.” 

Mahar said she also had to contact all the entities that the town does business with electronically. 

“It’s been a nightmare,” she said. “But it’s made my last week memorable.” 

This is Mahar’s last full week as Mount Desert’s treasurer. Her retirement date is March 31, but she agreed to keep working part time until her successor has been hired. 

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]
Dick Broom

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