Nova Scotia

Hacked contest disappoints hockey team

A Nova Scotia hockey team is disappointed after hackers hijacked an online video contest to win a free trip to the World Junior Championship in Alberta.

Hackers have defeated a hockey team in Nova Scotia hoping to win national exposure and a free trip to the World Junior Championship in Alberta.

Tim-Br Mart pulled its online national video contest last week, citing "persistent illegal and malicious hacking and tampering."

Now people across the country won't get to vote on the off-the-ice effort of the Cole Harbour Pee Wee AAA Wings.

The young players heard about the cancelled contest on Friday, after their video was played at a Halifax Mooseheads game as a way to promote their entry and score them votes.

"That night on our way home we got the email saying that it was cancelled," said 12-year-old Colton Giles. "I was disappointed, really disappointed, thought we had a good chance."

Their video, called We Play Anywhere, shows the team playing on a beach, a sailboat and the rocks at Peggys Cove. It also features high-profile alumni like Sidney Crosby.

The team's video was a top contender on the Tim-Br website. With enough votes, the Wings would win a trip to the World Junior Championships in Edmonton later this month.

But Tim-Br Mart said it couldn't continue with its online contest because someone was tampering with the voting system.

Organizers tried to reset the contest a few weeks ago, but the hacking continued. They said both the RCMP and an IT forensics security firm are investigating.

"This is not the outcome we hoped for," Tim-Br Mart said on its website. "We are as devastated as the teams, their fans, supporters and all voters."

The winner will now be chosen in a random draw from the two dozen teams entered in the contest.

Wings coach Paul Mason said his players and their families put a lot of work into their video. Even though the contest has changed, he believes their work will still pay off.

"It was a great team-builder," Mason said. "We tell them on the ice we only do what we can control. We play the game based on the way we can control it. So the video contest is no different than that."