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Presidential Hack in Indonesia Results in Internet-Security Committee

Officials were expecting a ministry of Indonesian government to issue a decree allowing cyber police to monitor Internet activity. This happened after a hacker intruded into the Web site of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. Bangkokpost published this on March 22, 2007.

The hacker who called himself Qwerty attacked on March 17, 2007. Qwerty redirected visitors to one of the presidential websites, www.presidensby.info to a different site. The website contained a protest letter addressing the President. The letter was satirical that feigned the famous Tritura, which referred to the three demands of the Indonesians to President Sukarno presiding at that time in the 1960s. Asiamedia.ucla.edu published the news on March 22, 2007.

Qwerty also claimed to be a member of the underground in Indonesia. He demanded the President to reduce the cost of using the Internet. He further said that he supported Indonesia's "Go Open-Source program" making a plea to the President to abolish corruption, nepotism and collusion to not face God's punishment.

Jakarta is a city on the seaside of Indonesia. The city is home to 9 million people, a figure that swells to two more millions as commuters every day. In February heavy rain and floods lashed Jakarta for a week, killing dozens and displacing thousands. Referring to this catastrophe, Qwerty asked the President to provide support to those displaced people.

The hack remained for one and a half days. Although there was no damage to the Web site but it created panic among officials. They promptly set about new regulations for their Internet security, according to Jakarta Post, reported Reuters on March 21, 2007.

The Posts and Telecommunications Directorate General is making hurried preparations for legal regulations to establish an "Internet-Security Committee". Once ready, the committee will carry out the development and operation of a supervisory mechanism over database and agreement of IP-based networks.

The Directorate has procured the required hardware and software for U.S. $436,000 to aid the committee's works, said Galot S. Dewa Broto, spokesman for the directorate. He further said the directorate expected the regulations would be ready by June and the committee would begin operations in November.

Related article: Presidential Candidates Spamming Voters

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