The website of the Supreme Court of India was still non-functional almost 24 hours after it gave judgment in the CBI judge BH Loya death case. The website remained down for most part of Thursday after it became inaccessible in the afternoon hours.
Users were unable to gain access to the site as the message ‘This site can’t be reached’ flashed on the screen. The same message could be seen on the at the time of writing this report.
Social media users claimed on Thursday the site might have been hacked. They shared a screenshot purportedly showing a message in Portuguese from a known Brazilian hackers’ group.
The text read, “Hackeado por HighTech Brazil HackTeam” which translates to ‘Hacked by HighTech Brazil team’ in English.
The same hackers’ group was allegedly involved in the massive worldwide hacking of many sites on New Year’s Day in 2013. Among the sites affected at the time was India’s Reliance Netconnect.
Officials have not confirmed the hacking but reports state that work is still on to bring the site online with all the features intact.
TV reports said on Friday the site was “hacked a second time” allegedly by Bangladeshi hackers’ group late at night.
The site reportedly went down sometime after 12.15 pm on Thursday.
Attacks on government websites have happened in the past as well. On 6 April, the official website of Ministry of Defence went down. Those who tried to access the site were welcomed by a message with Chinese characters pointing at the possibility of the involvement of Chinese hackers. The National Informatics Centre (NIC) later clarified that the website was not hacked but was down due to technical issue.
In March, Minister of State for Electronics and IT KJ Alphons had told the Lok Sabha that 22,207 Indian websites, including 114 were government portals, had been hacked between April 2017 and January 2018 citing data from Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In).