Citi FM Online reports that the Government of Ghana’s website, www.ghana.gov.gh, has been hacked, in addition to several other crucial agency websites. Deputy Minister of Communications Ato Sarpong confirmed the hack today.
It appears that the website has been hacked by Alsancak Tim of Efeler Special Operations, a suspected Turkish operative. The motive of the attack is not yet clear, but the message posted by the hacker included political and religious statements.
With a growing focus on big data, e-government and improved service delivery, governments in developing economies are at a much greater risk of being incapacitated due to cyber risks than their counterparts in wealthier economies, which have bigger security budgets and stronger information security expertise.
Effective information security has become a critical element of organisational resilience and sustainability, and without the appropriate resources and technical expertise, denial-of-service attacks can cause major business disruption, not to mention the disclosure of its citizens’ sensitive and personal data to criminals.
It’s not only government agencies that are at risk, but critical infrastructure such as electricity and other utilities providers are also often targeted. Cyber attacks on critical infrastructure are an increasing threat across the globe, according to Kaspersky Lab. An attack on the power grid can be uniquely destructive since the majority of the economy would cease to function without it.
McAfee has predicted that small nations and terror groups will become even more active and will “attack by launching crippling distributed denial of service attacks or using malware that wipes the master boot record to destroy their enemies’ networks”.
Apart from the Government of Ghana, other critical websites that have been hacked include the Ministry of Communication, Scholarships Secretariat, the Ministry of Water Resources, Works and Housing, the Ghana Navy, National Service Scheme and the School Feeding Programme.
At the time of publishing, the websites in question were all still down.
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