Governance Now Masterminds

Was MHA website hacked?

In the backdrop of digital economy push, the incident raises concerns over cyber security

GN Bureau | February 13, 2017


#Cyber Security   #Rajnath Singh   #MHA Website   #MHA   #Ministry of Home Affairs   #Hacking  
Representational illustration
Representational illustration

Home ministry, which is supposed to maintain the internal security in the country, has reportedly fallen prey to cybercrime. On February 12, reports of ministry of home affairs (MHA) web portal getting hacked came to the fore. The website was immediately taken down for some time by national informatics centre in response to threat.

Although, the ministry has denied any hacking activity and stated that the website was shut down because of technical glitches, concerns regarding cyber security have emerged again. In the backdrop of the government’s major push to digital economy and growing internet proliferation and internet-based services, cyber security has become a serious issue.

Is the government prepared to deal with potential risk of the growing digital ecosystem in the country? Available data on cyber security breaches doesn't reflect any preparedness.

According to the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) data more than 50,000 cyber security incidents were reported during 2016. The number has only increased in recent years. A total number of 44,679 and 49,455 cyber security incidents were observed during the year 2014 and 2015, respectively, minister of state for electronics and IT P P Chaudhary said in a written reply to Lok Sabha this month.

The cyber security incidents included phishing, scanning or probing, website intrusions and defacements, virus or malicious code and denial of service attacks.

Furthermore, as per the official data from MHA, number of government websites being hacked remains high.

The MHA said, as many as 189, 165, 164 and 199 websites of central ministries or department and state governments were hacked in the year 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016, respectively.

Cybercrime cases in the country are registered under the Information Technology Act of 2000.
 

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