NEW DELHI: Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN), the country’s premier agency dealing with cyber security contingencies, said that its website was neither attacked nor brought down on Saturday. Hackers allegedly belonging to the group called Anonymous had earlier claimed they had attacked CERT-IN website with Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack.
A spokesperson from ministry of communications & IT told TOI, “The claim that CERT-IN website was attacked and brought down by hackers is without any basis and at complete variance with the facts. The fact is that the website has been running continuously & uninterruptedly — including the whole of today.”
Incidentally, TOI could not access CERT-IN website on Saturday morning for a few hours. A check with http://www.downforeveryoneorjustme.com, a tool that can tell a web user if a website is down or not, revealed that CERT-IN was inaccessible.
The government acknowledged that hackers have been carrying out DDoS attacks on certain websites. “These attacks have been monitored and mitigated in a timely manner. Due to the massive attacks carried out by the hacker groups, it is possible that the sites may have been slightly slow in responding, depending upon the connectivity from where the sites were accessed, giving the impression that the site has been brought down,” said the spokesperson. He added that CERT-IN is analyzing logs of the attacked websites to identify hackers. “The attacks were multi-pronged. Therefore analyzing the logs and identifying the attackers will take reasonable time. As for action against them, all possibilities are on the table and law will take its own course,” he said.
Earlier Anonymous, which protested against what it perceives “web censorship” in several Indian cities today evening, had claimed that it attacked and took down CERT-IN website. “This is your response team #india! They can’t even protect themselves. How will they protect others,” read a tweet from @opindia_revenge, the group’s Twitter handle.