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Hackers’ Attack Against Government Websites in India Increases

According to the information of CERT-In (Indian Computer Emergency Response Team) of the Department of Information Technology, which it has tracked, found that a number of government Websites were breached during January 2005 to February 2008.

The various hacked Websites included those of the Air Cargo Customs (Mumbai), Ministry of Railways, National Institute of Health and Family Welfare, Forward Markets Commission, National Institute of Social Defense, Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances, Anthropological Survey of India, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited, Wireless Planning and Coordination Wing, and Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, Department of Information Technology.

Sardonically, the attackers even changed the site of the Department of Information Technology, the central body devoted to combat the menace. They also broke into the site of the Wireless Planning and Coordination Wing of the Department of Telecommunications, the agency that is in-charge of spectrum allocation.

Hacking of the Websites took place by exploiting flaws in Web server, operating systems, application software and database software.

Following the incidents, the Government of India has embarked with various remedial measures relating to the Websites' security and with enhancement of the online security of the country's IT infrastructure. Despite that, hackers managed to infiltrate the important Websites and gain control over them.

Also, despite putting in all efforts, the number of hackers' incidents of crashing into Indian websites shows a continuous growth. This is evident from the 87 security-related incidents reported in January 2008 compared to 45 reported in December 2007.

According to certain government statistics, of the total incidents reported, 47% related to online phishing, 25% to worms and viruses, 21% to unlawful scanning and 7% to technical issues.

Hence, the alarmed home ministry, due to the increasing hacking attacks against government Websites, has asked the government departments to run their Websites only from the state and central government servers.

The Information Technology Department of India says that it is now hosting the servers of all the main ministries of the country. The department has asked the National Informatics Center (NIC) to conduct this task and most ministries' servers have been shifted to this central government body.

Related article: Hackers Redirect Windows Live Search to Malicious Sites

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