[ISN] India declares war against Pak in cyberia

From: InfoSec News (isnat_private)
Date: Tue Jan 01 2002 - 23:10:11 PST

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    Bipin Chandran in New Delhi
    January 2, 2002 
    India is preparing for a war on the web. This time the government is
    putting its prestige on the line to prevent hackers from defacing
    various government web sites, a routine occurrence when tension
    between India and Pakistan escalates.
    The National Informatics Centre (NIC) has tightened security at
    various government web sites by installing additional security
    software solutions.
    Not just that. NIC engineers are constantly monitoring the government
    networks to find out hackers and check attacks, a senior NIC official
    told Business Standard.
    NIC is the apex government body that maintains various government web
    sites and computer networks.
    NIC's plans include providing additional firewall security software to
    the government web sites, training intelligence officers to trace
    hacking and updating the network administrators of the government web
    sites with latest cyber security technologies.
    The move comes just after the working group on IT set up by the
    government recommended spending Rs 300 crore to improve information
    technology security in the country.
    The list of Indian sites which have been broken into and hacked by
    pro-Pakistani groups in the last two years is impressive and
    They range from the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre and the ministry of
    external affairs to NIC, VSNL, Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic
    Research, the Indian Institute of Science and the Department of
    The objective of anti-Indian hackers appears to be to plant threats
    and anti-India slogans on home pages. There have been instances of
    hackers guiding surfers to anti-India websites.
    The Indo-Pak cyberwar first started after the Pokhran II tests in May
    1998. Soon after India tested the bomb, a group of hackers called
    milw0rm broke into the Bhabha Atomic Research Center web site and
    posted anti-India and anti-nuclear messages.
    During the 1999 Kargil war again, hackers from Pakistan resorted to
    defacing web sites in India.
    One of the earliest Indian sites to be hacked was
    http://www.armyinkashmir.com, established by the Indian government to
    provide factual information about daily events in the Kashmir Valley.
    The hackers posted photographs showing Indian military forces
    allegedly killing Kashmiri militants. The pictures had captions like
    "Massacre! Torture! Extrajudicial execution!" and "The agony of
    crackdown" and blamed the Indian government for its alleged atrocities
    in Kashmir.
    Last year, pro-Pakistan cyber warriors attacked Indian Science
    Congress 2000 and the National Informatics Centre. They also invaded
    the web site of the Videsh Sanchar Nigam Limited and posted anti-India
    India should be spanked and their nukes (that is if they have any)  
    taken away. This message from the Muslim Online Syndicate greeted
    surfers when they chanced upon the website of the Department of Atomic
    Energy recently.
    We're GForce Pakistan, up with 260 events of defaces (Indian) and
    we're proud Pakistani hackers," was the declaration on the Indian
    Institute of Science.
    According to attrition.org, a web site that tracks computer
    security-related developments on the Internet, attacks on Indian
    cyberspace increased from 4 in 1999 to 72 in 2000. These numbers cover
    only the attacks carried out on domains ending with '.in'.
    This year has been the worst so far. According to India Cracked, a
    site that tracks defacements of Indian web sites, over 150 Indian
    sites have already been hacked into in the first six months. Most of
    these break-ins had a strong pro-Pakistan flavour.
    ISN is currently hosted by Attrition.org
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