ATLANTA — Channel 2 Action News has learned the FBI is investigating to learn who possibly hacked an electronic billboard that displayed a pornographic image.
Channel 2's Amy Napier Viteri spoke with a cybersecurity expert about how this could happen.
It's a big electronic advertisement familiar to anyone who travels the intersection of Peachtree Road and East Paces Ferry in Buckhead.
Saturday, among the images, drivers saw a graphic picture of a man exposing himself.
One driver was so disturbed she called 911.
"There's an electronic billboard that is flashing a naked man," one woman said in the 911 call. "It's not actually an emergency; it's just totally disgusting."
Police say the billboard's owner temporarily cut power to the billboard.
"The comments I was seeing on it was 'Oh my gosh! The children,'" said Buckhead resident Allison.
Allison said she saw the image on social media.
"I know people from the pizza place were sitting and having to see it while they ate," Allison said.
Wednesday, an FBI spokesperson told Viteri that agents are trying to determine all of the servers involved in the apparent hacking and their locations.
The president of Georgia's Outdoor Advertising Association sent Viteri a statement saying, "The industry has established clear and strict protocols on security to prevent hacking of digital billboards."
But Tony Ucedavelez, who runs a security consulting firm, says for some billboards, hacking in is as simple as learning a password.
"If access to that web interface gets compromised, then it's fairly easy to alter the image," Ucedavelez said.
"What's to say it couldn't be something with more sensitive information? If these holes exist someplace, they could exist other places as well," Allison said.