Wednesday, June 15, 2011

PHL gov't to assess website security in response to hacking

A day after a "Filipino" hacker group hinted at more attacks on Philippine government websites, a review of the security of government websites may get underway soon.

Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda indicated that National Security Adviser Cesar Garcia is studying creating a task force to do the review.

"The National Security Adviser is studying the creation of a task force to undertake a security review of government websites," he said in
a statement posted on the government portal.

Among the most recent attacks on government websites was the
defacing last May 31 of the Department of Interior and Local Government's site (

In that incident, a hacker managed to gain access to the website and display the logo of a porn site as one of the agency's "news items."

The "What's New in DILG" section of the DILG's home page contained a link boasting that the website had been "Hacked."

Clicking on the link would take the visitor to a page supposedly containing a news item. But instead of a news item, the visitor would see a logo of porn site YouJizz.

The DILG website was promptly taken offline for days before it returned to normal.

The hacker identified himself or herself as "BatangMahiligMagbatibot" in the compromised page.

But on Monday, a more "serious" group
managed to hijack the site of the Philippine Nuclear Research Institute.

The group, calling itself "Philker," redirecting visitors to the PNRI site to a separate website that bore a "warning" from the "Philker" group.

"We are not trying to damage you. We only want to help protect our country's cyberspace by doing what seems to be the most efficient way to get everyone's attention. May this deface serve as a reminder that you always have to look out for intruders. No matter how intelligent and competent your computer personnel are, there will be unethical hackers that are constantly working on breaking in your security," the hackers said in
their message in the redirected site.

It added that it was "fortunate" that Philker was the one that broke into the site and not other groups.

The site was inaccessible Monday afternoon and was briefly back up later in the day.

But as of Tuesday noon, visitors to the site were greeted with a "Test page."

Philker said that while it and online "thieves and terrorists" are "cut from the same cloth," its difference is that "we have good intentions."

It added it aims to elevate the Philippines' cyber culture and to "point out and correct the vulnerabilities of Philippine websites," to "protect them from unethical hackers, fraud, false propaganda and other people with malicious intent."

It also hinted at future break-ins of other sites, leaving behind a note similar to the international hacktivist group Anonymous.

"Expect more from us. We are Philker," it said - a nod to Anonymous' "Expect us" warning.
- TJD, GMA News

GMA News

Related News:

PHL hackers deface PNRI website, hint at more attacks

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