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Saturday, June 11, 2011

Vietnam Government Agencies & Ministries Official Websites Hacked

Just within several days of early June, technology and security forums have reckoned hundreds of “.vn” websites which have been hacked, including the websites of government agencies and ministries.

Not only targeting individual websites, the attacks have also aimed at the ministries and agencies’ websites with the domain name of “.gov.vn” which take slack security measures. The massive hacking into Vietnamese websites has also been recognized by domestic and international forums which have counted hundreds of attack cases.

In many cases, the hackers left the messages in the Chinese language or even the image of Chinese flag. On some international technology forums, people wrote that this could be a behavior of retaliation of Chinese hackers who target Vietnamese websites, after some Chinese websites were hacked.

Hackers left the messages in the Chinese language or the image of Chinese flag

Most of the government agencies’ websites hacked on June 4, were the websites of departments and divisions under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) at mard.gov.vn and agroviet.gov.vn, including vinhlong.mard.gov.vn/index.html, phunu.agroviet.gov.vn/, mne.mard.gov.vn/, tichhop.mard.gov.vn/, phathanh.mard.gov.vn/, kehoach.agroviet.gov.vn/…

Besides this, some other gov.vn domain names were also hacked, including chebien.gov.vn, giongcaytrong.gov.vn, as well as the websites of other private enterprises.

Slack security measures pave the way for attacks

Security experts say that the websites hacked recently all apply slack security measures. Hackers just need to penetrate into a root server, for example mard.gov.vn, to be able to create impacts on tens of other websites at lower levels. The attacked “.com.vn” websites were also mostly the websites run by small private businesses.

The experts also say that most of the websites are not well equipped with the measures to protect information security. They do not regularly make the error fixing updates; therefore, they could be easily hacked. Hackers even can make automatic scanning into “.vn” and “.go.vn” websites with some software to find out the systems which have security problems; then they can penetrate the systems through the security holes.

According to experts, the above said factors show that the hackers who attacked hundreds of websites in Vietnam over the last few days are not really professional and have high qualifications. However, the experts have advised network administrators and webmasters to backup data and check the security procedures, as well as update error fixing versions in order to prevent possible risks.

Vietnamese hackers condemn the attack to Chinese websites

Regarding the attack to some Chinese websites on June 2, which has led to the behavior of taking rehabilitation of hacking Vietnamese websites, some well- known administrators of security forums in Vietnam have condemned for the behavior of attacking Chinese websites.

“If it is true that some Vietnamese hackers have hacked some Chinese websites, this should be seen as a sudden emotional behavior. This will bring nothing,” conmale, the administrator of HVA forum commented.

Another administrator of HVA said that though he does not know who are the people that are hacking Chinese websites; but he thinks they are still very young and immature. This has been reflected in the colors and the deface images they used and left after hacking, plus the inaccurate English.

“The hacking and retaliation of the Vietnamese and Chinese hackers will not bring any benefits to any sides. If the attacks continue, the biggest suffers will be the institutions and private enterprises of the two sides, since the websites are destroyed continuously,” kientran worte.

“You may feel satisfied when you can destroy some websites just within some minutes, but you do not understand that by doing this, you have indirectly made hundreds of websites in Vietnam suffer,” he continued.

An expert, who asked to be anonymous, said that though the number of attacks to Vietnamese and Chinese websites is high, but they are not too serious because of the simple way of attacking, which shows the low professional skills of hackers.