India: 112 government sites hacked in 3 months

Summary:The Indian government has some serious security issues, and hackers are taking advantage. Over a hundred websites were hacked in the last three months alone; data was either deleted or stolen.

112 Indian government websites were hacked in the last three months, according to Sachin Pilot, Minister of State for Communications and IT. The hacked websites were part of government agencies belonging to Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Kerala, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh, Sikkim, and Manipur. Also included were the Ministry of Finance, Health, Planning Commission, and Human Resource Development, according to India Times.

The website of state-owned telecom operator Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) was attacked for the fourth time on December 4, by a Pakistani hacker group called "H4tr!ck." In fact, at least 22 websites under the Rajasthan state government were destroyed by hackers, mostly from Pakistan, in February. They deleted or stole data from the various sites of important departments including technical education, college education and finance, according to sources cited by India Times.

State government websites have very poor security practices. For example, most government websites in Rajasthan run on single server. This means if a hacker exploits a single vulnerability in any of the websites, he or she can compromise the other websites as well by taking control of the whole server. To make matters worse, when data is deleted, backups are simply uploaded back to website. Given that the sites are attacked again and again, it would appear that nothing is being done to actually fix the security issues.

This can't go on forever: India is going to have to tap some of the bright minds in IT and get its act together. After all, India is the world's second most populous country: it's simply a question of putting the right people in the right positions.

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Topics: Software Development, Browser, Security

About

Emil is a freelance journalist writing for CNET and ZDNet. Over the years, he has covered the tech industry for multiple publications, including Ars Technica, Neowin, and TechSpot.

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