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January 28, 2016

Hackers fabricate Philippines robbery report of Philadelphia City Councilman

Councilman Kenyatta Johnson clears up misunderstanding after residents receive alarming email

City Council Hackers
012816_KenyattaJohnson Source/Creative Commons

Philadelphia City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson.

An alarming report that Philadelphia City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson, of the 2nd District, was robbed at gunpoint in the Philippines this week turns out to have been a phishing scam perpetrated by hackers who broke into an old e-mail account.

According to the Passyunk Post, several concerned readers wrote to report that they had received an e-mail in which Johnson claimed to have been robbed in Manila while attending an unspecified program. In the e-mail below, Johnson's hackers ask for money to be sent to him so that he can return to Philadelphia.

Contributed Art/Passyunk Post

Local residents received email allegedly from Councilman Kenyatta Johnson.

As it turns out, the email was a scam circulated by hackers who cracked into Johnson's former account with the advocacy group Peace Not Guns.

In a post on Facebook Wednesday afternoon, Johnson cleared up the misunderstanding.

Contributed Art/Facebook

Philadelphia City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson quashes phishing scam in Facebook post.

The Passyunk Post confirmed that Johnson is in good health in Philadelphia and did not lose any documents, luggage or other personal effects.