India fears ISIS web attacks as experts warn of re-run of Hebdo cyber hacks

Days after attack on Charlie Hebdo, over 19,000 French websites were allegedly hacked by ISIS supporters.

The effect of cyber attack was also felt in India as several websites of French institutions including a French school in Delhi was defaced by Islamic hackers who also posted a flag of ISIS on the compromised websites.

Experts fear escalation of similar attacks after the recent Paris attack.

“I don’t think India is prepared for cyber warfare. There is a number of government agencies working to secure cyber space but they lack coordination,” says Dinesh O Bareja, noted cyber security expert of the Open Security Alliance.

Even government records show a rise in the number of cyber attacks in the past few year years.

A total number of 22,060, 71,780, 1,30,338, and 49,504 cyber security incidents including phishing, scanning, spam, malicious code and website intrusion were reported to the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) during the year 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 (up to May). Data also shows that a total of 27,605 and 28,481 websites were hacked by various hacker groups during the year 2012 and 2013, respectively.

This attack increased in the year 2014 and 2015 (upto May), as the total number of security incidents includes the websites hacked by various hacker groups went up to 32,323 and 9,057 respectively.

The official data stands way below the number of cases that goes unreported, says to experts.

According to them thousands of websites are defaced just on days of historic importance like Independence and Republic day when hackers from both the countries tries to exhibit their strength online.

“India doesn’t have a robust cyber threat or reporting legal framework. So there can always be cyber attack in isolation or over private infrastructure.” said cyber expert and advocate Prashant Mali.


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