Friday, January 22, 2021

Sheriff says stay safe surrounding smart home swatting

Sheriff says stay safe surrounding smart home swatting


Nationally, smart home device manufacturers have notified law enforcement that offenders have been using stolen e-mail passwords to access smart devices with cameras and voice capabilities to carry out swatting attacks.

What is Swatting?

Swatting is a term used to describe a hoax call made to emergency services, typically reporting an immediate threat to human life. The goal is to draw a response from law enforcement and the SWAT team to a specific location. Confusion on the part of homeowners or responding officers has resulted in health-related or violent consequences in some other parts of the country. These attacks also pull limited resources away from valid emergencies.

Swatting may be motivated by revenge, used as a form of harassment, or used as a prank, but it is a serious crime that may have potentially deadly consequences.

Offenders often use spoofing technology to anonymize their own phone numbers to make it appear to first responders as if the emergency call is coming from the victim’s phone number. This enhances their credibility when communicating with dispatchers.

How is this version of Swatting carried out?

Recently, offenders have been using victims’ smart devices to carry out swatting attacks. To gain access to the devices, offenders are likely taking advantage of customers who reuse their email passwords for their smart device. The offenders use stolen email passwords to log into the device and hijack features, including the live-stream camera and device speakers.

They then call emergency services to report a crime at the victim’s residence. As law enforcement responds to the residence, the offender watches the live stream footage and engages with the responding police through the camera and speakers. In some cases, the offender also livestreams the incident on shared online community platforms.

Protection and Defense

If you have smart home devices with cameras and/or voice options, there are a few basic ways to protect yourself:

  • Use complex passwords or passphrases for online accounts, and don’t reuse passwords across different accounts.
  • Use multi-factor authentication (MFA) for all online accounts and any device that touches the internet. Best bet – don’t use a secondary email address for that secondary layer of authentication. Use a mobile phone number, virtual or physical tokens, or biometric options (such as a face or fingerprint scan).

If you have been victimized in this kind of crime, make sure to file a report with your local police department. If you believe your email or other smart device credentials were compromised, you should also report the incident to the FBI’s Internet Crime Center at or call your FBI local office.

Article is by Beth Anne Steel at Oregon FBI-

For more information and tips please visit: and Facebook at Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office – Oregon.

Sneaker wave warning issued by NWS

Sneaker wave warning issued by NWS

Sneaker Waves Lincoln City

National Weather Service Portland (NWS) issued a Beach Hazards Statement Saturday for the Central Oregon Coast calling for possible sneaker waves from late tonight until Sunday afternoon.

Sneaker waves can run up on the beach, sweeping people off their feet and moving large water-soaked logs, causing injury or loss of life. Beachgoers are reminded to stay off rocks and jetties near the surf zone. Please keep children and pets away from the water.

NWS says if you see someone swept into the ocean do not swim in after them. Call 911 and keep an eye on them until help arrives.

FBI maintaining heightened posture amid potential Salem violence

FBI maintaining heightened posture amid potential Salem violence

Salem Capitol Protest

FBI’s Portland Field Office is working with local authorities to prepare for potential violent activity that could occur at the Capitol in Salem in the days leading up to Jan. 20.

“Given the unrest at the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021, we are maintaining a heightened posture to monitor for any emerging threats to our region,” FBI Special Agent in Charge Renn Cannon said. “We are focused on identifying, investigating, and disrupting individuals who were involved in the siege of the U.S. Capitol and/or those who may continue to incite violence and engage in criminal activity here locally.”

The FBI has set up a command center to gather intelligence and coordinate with local law enforcement on potential threats. Special agents, bomb technicians, evidence response teams, tactical teams, intelligence teams and other support assets have deployed to Oregon’s Capitol. Portland FBI said the plan is to counter violence at the State Capitol, federal buildings and the community at large.

Officials at the FBI have said they need the public’s help to protect Oregon’s seat of government and to protect the constitutional rights of peaceful protesters.

“We cannot be successful without the help of the American people as we work to fulfill our mission to protect the American people and uphold the U.S. Constitution.”

FBI has a website with a tip form and can be reached by phone at 503-224-4181 or 1-800-CALL-FBI.

King Tide hits Kyllo’s Seafood Grill, again

King Tide hits Kyllo’s Seafood Grill, again

Kyllo’s Seafood Grill took multiple hits from logs propelled by King Tide Tuesday, as bystanders looked on from restaurant windows and D River State Recreation Site.

“This is just crazy,” a Lincoln City politician said. “Look at the windows shake when the logs hit the pylons. There’s people in there.”

A large tree was pushed under the D River Bridge, where it became stuck, as the Pacific Ocean ran up the “World’s Shortest River” with a bevy of timber in tow.

This is not the first time the ocean has battered the restaurant, having ruptured a gas line in 2018 and forcing the evacuation of patrons and staff.

Kyllo’s is designed to withstand high tides and the accompanying logs that rattle around under the restaurant.

Many turned out to D River State Recreation Area to witness firsthand the violent effects of the Pacific during King Tide and flood warnings.

“This is an example of why you never go down to the beach on days like this,” said Bill Davis from Tacoma, Wash. “We’ll just enjoy the view from the safety of our car.”

First 2021 baby born at Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital

First 2021 baby born at Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital
First baby 2021 SNLH
Jared and Elizabeth Baker show off baby girl number three, Hazel JaneAnn

Each year, around 120 babies are welcomed into the world at Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital’s Birthing Center. First in line this year was Hazel JaneAnn Baker, born at 11:34 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 8, to parents Jared and Elizabeth Baker of Otis.

Hazel weighed 7 pounds, 8 ounces and was 20.5 inches long at birth. Meghan Moorhead, MD, was the attending physician.

The Bakers have lived locally for just about a year, coming to the Oregon coast from Washington, so Jared could help with the construction business owned by close family friends they consider to be their “adopted” aunt and uncle, Kevin and Heidi Newman. While most of the Bakers’ extended family are in Washington, Baby Hazel was welcomed home by two older sisters, Ella, 8, and August, 5.

Keeping with tradition, a large gift basket was presented to the family by Leslie James, development specialist for the North Lincoln Hospital Foundation. It included such things as stuffed animals, baby blankets, baby comb and brush, burp cloths, and more.

On behalf of the North Lincoln Hospital Foundation, Leslie James presents a bountiful gift basket to new parents Jared and Elizabeth Baker, with baby Hazel JaneAnn
On behalf of the North Lincoln Hospital Foundation, Leslie James presents a bountiful gift basket to the new parents and their bundle of joy

Another present, given by Sherri Nordyke on behalf of her non-profit organization, Clara’s Closet, was a “baby shower in a box” – diapers, wipes, infant development toy, book, pacifiers, animal blanket, hand-knit sweater and hat, receiving blankets, bibs, burp cloths, Halo SleepSack, hangers, newborn clothing and safety items.

In addition, this year’s New Year baby received a plush commemorative baby blanket embroidered and donated by Oregon Corrections Enterprises (OCE), which is now doing laundry service for the hospital.

Lincoln County to remain ‘High Risk’ for next two weeks

Lincoln County to remain ‘High Risk’ for next two weeks

Lincoln County High Risk

EDITOR’S NOTE: All data is current as of 9 p.m. Jan. 11.

Lincoln County Public Health officials confirmed Monday night that Lincoln County will remain in the “High Risk” category for COVID-19 under Governor Brown’s Oregon’s Risk and Protection Framework.

According to data pulled from the Risk Level Metrics report published Monday, Lincoln County barely stays “High Risk” with 198.9 cases per 100,000 population with 96 cases. Lincoln County will reenter High Risk starting Friday.

Restaurants will still be able to serve patrons inside and retail businesses will stay at 50 percent capacity. A full report of high risk guidance can be found below.

Lincoln County School District Superintendent Karen Gray said the district plans to bring K-6 students partially back to schools starting February 1, barring any COVID-19 surges. Older students could also start back a couple days a week beginning February 8.

COVID-19 vaccines are being distributed and Lincoln County has vaccinated 1,296 people with a first dose. Lincoln County has received 1,700 doses and expects another 770 this week.

Oregon’s Risk and Protection Framework, a system created to combat the spread of coronavirus, took effect Dec. 3, the day after Governor Brown’s 2-Week-Freeze. The framework uses four levels of risk: Extreme Risk, High Risk, Moderate Risk, and Lower Risk. Oregon Health Authority (OHA) examines data to determine which risk categories counties fall under. OHA makes determinations bi-weekly based on COVID-19 disease metrics.

Oregon COVID-19 Disease Metrics
Oregon COVID-19 Disease Metrics

The framework is being used under the authority of Governor Brown with executive order 20-66. Also cited is ORS 433.441, ORS 433.443, ORS 431A.010.

High Risk Guidance:

Social gatherings indoor and outdoor remain limited to six and eight persons respectively, with a recommended limit of two households coming into contact with one another.

Indoor dining is allowed with takeout being highly recommended. Indoor capacity is not to exceed 25 percent with a maximum of 50 customers. Outdoor dining is allowed with a cap of 75 people and six people per party. Eating and drinking establishments need to close at 11 p.m.

Gyms, indoor pools and indoor recreation businesses may have 25 percent occupancy or 50 people, whichever is smaller. Theaters, museums and any indoor entertainment must abide by the same rules.

Retail business, such as grocery stores, convenience stores and pharmacies, can have up to 50 percent capacity with curbside pickup encouraged. This includes shopping centers such as malls.

Churches, funeral homes and cemeteries have a maximum capacity of 25 percent or 150 people, whichever is smaller. 200 people can congregate outdoors at these places.

Remote work is recommended for offices under “high risk” and if Lincoln County moves into the “extreme risk” category, offices will be asked to close to the public, if possible.

Outdoor recreation and entertainment establishments are limited to 75 people. This includes, outdoor sports, parks, hiking trails, campsites, zoos and stadiums.

Personal services are allowed and long-term care will allow inside and outside visitation.

All activities are subject to more detailed, sector-specific guidance and assume mask usage, minimum physical distancing and enhanced cleaning protocols.

UPDATED: NWS issues flood warnings for Central Oregon Coast

UPDATED: NWS issues flood warnings for Central Oregon Coast
D River Flooding
D River Flooding in Lincoln City earlier this month

National Weather Service Portland (NWS) issued water related warnings early Monday morning calling for heavy rains and likely flooding for the Central Oregon Coast.

NWS says heavy rain is likely to begin late Monday evening and will continue through Wednesday with the possibility of two to four inches for coastal areas. The heaviest rains are predicted for Tuesday morning through Tuesday evening.

According to NWS, Flooding of creeks and rivers draining the Oregon Coast Range is of primary concern. Floods and debris flows in recently burned areas is also possible, including the Echo Mountain Complex Fire region.

NWS Flood Watch and Coastal Flood advisories are effective through Wednesday. Landslides and urban flooding are possible. Tidal overflow flooding up to 1.5 feet above ground level during high tides is expected in low lying areas near bays, sloughs and lower reaches of coastal rivers.

Oregon’s Office of Emergency Management urges residents to prepare for flooding, landslides and power outages.

With heavy winter rains and high winds forecast across the state over the next few days, Oregon’s Office of Emergency Management encourages residents to be aware – and prepared – for flooding, landslides and power outages.

Basic preparedness actions can help prevent dangerous situations. This begins with having an emergency kit with necessary supplies for up to two weeks, a practiced family plan with steps for what to do in an emergency, and knowing the difference between a flood watch and a flood warning.

Depoe Bay mainstay Bill Spores dies

Depoe Bay mainstay Bill Spores dies


DEPOE BAY — Bill Spores, a stalwart of the community whose dogged public service led to the remarkable growth of municipal parks, is dead at 87.

Recalled as a man of intelligence, wit and tenacious devotion to his community, Spores was considered the backbone of Depoe Bay’s signature annual event, the Indian-style Salmon Bake. Moreover, as chairman for decades of the city’s respected parks commission, he was influential in expanding the city parks system to include a striking nature trail, comfortable memorial benches and “pocket parks” throughout the city noted for their stunning ocean views.

“He played a pretty darned big role in Depoe Bay,” said Jim Hayes, a “tight” friend and fellow commission member who looked at Spores as many did. “When we first got here 17 years ago he took me under his wing. He mentored me through the parks commission and tutored me on the fire line at the salmon bake. He was like a father figure.”

A Willamette Valley native (Spores Creek, north of Eugene bears his pioneer family’s name) Spores studied English and played football at the University of Oregon, where he was a defensive lineman. An ardent Ducks fan, he lived in a “house divided” with his life companion of over 40 years, Bonnie, an OSU Beaver. A game flag in their living room was half Duck, half Beaver, and the couple often traveled to basketball games.

After college, Spores started a business career that included publishing in California’s Bay Area before settling in Depoe Bay as a successful retailer and landlord. He operated a pair of quirky businesses, an antique store called The What-Not Shop and the Depoe Bay Brass Works. He served a couple of terms on the city council, held positions on the budget and urban renewal committee and was a leader of the Chamber of Commerce in its heyday years of the 80’s and 90’s.

Spores had a personality that impressed newcomers, such as recently-arrived City Recorder Barbara Chestler.

“He was really witty and always kind,” she recalled. “He always had time to talk to you, asking you how was your day. When I think of Bill, I see him smiling.”

Another city supervisor, public works chief Brady Weidner, worked closely with Spores to expand the city’s picturesque parks system. Unpretentious, he was nonetheless an astute politician who squeezed lasting projects from the city’s diminutive budget.

“He was a good guy who got things done with a smile and a funny quip,” said Weidner, who met Spores in 1985 after becoming a city employee. “I remember telling him that a girl he dated back in the 40s — ‘Rosemary’ — now lived next door to my parents in Lake Oswego. He just smiled and asked, ‘which one?’”

Debby Metz arrived in town in the 1970s and became a tenant in one of Bill’s apartments for $75 per month. He soon hired her to work in his brass shop. She said Spores knew his town and its denizens well and could speak with authority about the politics and issues of other coast cities, too.

“He was quite a character and a father figure to me, too,” she remembered. “He was like that to a lot of kids in town. He was very intelligent. He’d say something to you and you’d have to think about it for a minute.”

Bill Spores not only sold brass, he possessed it, asserted neighboring businessman and city councilor Jerome Grant.

“I liked Bill, though we didn’t agree on everything,” he said. “He was a tough-minded individual who stood up for himself and others, always with the city’s best interests at heart. He volunteered his own time on multiple commissions and the city council over many years — in other words, true volunteerism.”

News of his death was broken Tuesday night at a city council meeting, with few details. Later reports indicated Spores died Saturday, Dec. 19 three days before his 88th birthday at a Corvallis hospital following a surgical procedure for his heart. His passing was the latest among the iconic old guard of Depoe Bay. In recent months, the town lost brothers Pogo and Lars Robison, and Lee Bowman, a beloved volunteer who was also Mayor Kathy Short’s father.

“He led quite a colorful life before coming here, and quite a colorful life after that,” concluded his fast friend Jim Hayes.

Readers are encouraged to leave their recollections of Bill Spores in the Homepage comments section below.

Sneaker wave warning issued by NWS

Sneaker wave warning issued by NWS

Sneaker Waves Lincoln CityA Beach Hazards Statement was issued by National Weather Service Portland for the Central Oregon Coast, calling for an increased sneaker wave chance.

The alert goes into effect 10 a.m. Friday and lasts until Saturday morning.

Sneaker waves can run up on the beach and create life-threatening conditions. Caution should be used near the surf and parents should be especially watchful of children.

Sneaker waves can lift heavy water soaked logs and cause them to roll, which can lead to injury and death.

Samaritan walk-in clinics to close for health care worker vaccinations

Samaritan walk-in clinics to close for health care worker vaccinations

Samaritan Clinic

The Samaritan walk-in clinics located in Newport and Lincoln City will be temporarily closed to the public Friday, Jan. 15 through Sunday, Jan. 17 so that community health care workers – by appointment only through the county health department – can obtain their first round of COVID-19 vaccinations at those two locations.

Anyone with medical needs during those dates who may have turned to the walk-in clinics for care are encouraged to contact their primary care provider for an appointment or to visit for information about other health care options. For emergency needs, the emergency departments at Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital and Samaritan Pacific Communities Hospital are always open.

“We apologize for any inconvenience, but it is imperative that we assist in vaccinating our fellow health care workers against the coronavirus,” said Lesley Ogden, MD, chief executive officer of both Samaritan hospitals in Lincoln County. “These walk-in clinic locations seemed the most logical in terms of staffing, parking and accessibility.”

Samaritan Health Services began receiving vaccine in late December. In collaboration with Lincoln County Health and Human Services, the vaccine is being distributed in multiple phases to health care workers, first responders and long-term care facility staff and residents. This will be followed by those at highest risk for the disease and essential workers, then the younger and healthier general public.

Community health care employers located in Lincoln County are being contacted by the county and asked to register their staff for vaccinations. This will be followed by another Samaritan walk-in clinic closure in 21 days so these individuals can obtain their second dose.

If you are a community health care employer and have not been contacted by the county, go online to to register your agency. If more information is needed, call 541-265-0621 option #0 or email [email protected]