Anyone with information on the incident is asked to contact authorities.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Homeland Security and local authorities are investigating hateful vandalism near a museum on the Ben Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia on Sunday.
A swastika was found spray painted next to the Horwitz Wasserman Holocaust Memorial Plaza, an institution that honors victims of the Holocaust and educates others.
Philadelphia police say they were first called to the scene on the 1600 block of Arch Street just after 2 p.m.
Upon arrival, officers found the spray-painted swastika on the east side of the Verizon Building adjacent to the memorial plaza.
It was quickly covered by emergency crews later in the afternoon.
Action News spoke with the director of the Holocaust Remembrance Foundation about the troubling incident.
She was able to view security footage of the vandalism taking place.
"The incident happened overnight around 1:30 a.m.," said Eszter Kutas, director of the Holocaust Remembrance Foundation. "A single individual approached the site with spray paint in his hand and very quickly put a two-by-two swastika on our site. We are the oldest Holocaust memorial in the United States, so obviously this incident is very upsetting to us."
Action News also obtained the surveillance video of the vandal committing the crime.
Police describe the suspect as an unknown male wearing a black mask and a dark-colored jacket, possibly brown, with a stripe across the chest and down the arms.
Authorities are now hoping someone may recognize the suspect and will help identify him.
Unfortunately, Kutas told Action News this incident was not surprising.
"It's not the first time it has happened," she said. "We've seen a drastic rise of antisemitic incidents in our communities. It's been on the rise for several years but in particular since Hamas's attack on Israel."
"The Jewish people have been victims of antisemitism for thousands of years now and we cannot stay silent," Kutas added.
The Anti-Defamation League says it has seen an increase in antisemitism since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas in October.
According to the organization, preliminary data shows that in the three months since the war began overseas, antisemitic attacks increased 360% nationwide.
"It's affecting all of us. It's affecting Jewish people, Jewish institutions, places like this that are supposed to have a historical reflection," said Kutas.
She hopes the community speaks up so that police can stop the suspect from spreading more hate.
"As people, we really need to come together to fight all forms of hatred and bigotry together," she said.
An investigation into the vandalism is ongoing. Anyone with information on the incident is asked to contact authorities.