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Hackers hone in on Kenya’s government

Kenya , 11 Aug 2014

Hackers hone in on Kenya’s government

Kenya has graduated to the top most cyber insecurity hierarchy because hackers are targeting the country’s government, says an expert from antivirus software firm Kaspersky.

Last month, an official Kenya Defence Forces Twitter account was hacked. The hackers, claiming links to ‘hacktivists’ Anonymous, then used the hijacked Twitter account to criticise issues such as corruption in Kenya.

And Bethwel Opil, who is the channel sales manager for East Africa at Kaspersky Lab, says that events such as this show how Kenya has evolved to another level of cyber insecurity.

“If you look at the cyber security trends you can actually put them in a pyramid level. At the bottom of the pyramid are the regular criminals who target individuals. The middle level usually holds the corporate world and this is where corporate espionage comes in and other attacks like police spyware. On top of the pyramid there are the cyber weapons and they are attacks on state information,” Opil said.

“We are now seeing Kenya moving to the top most with groups like Anonymous already targeting government information online,” he added.

Opil suggests government bodies should, for example, use genuine software and employ a capable workforce who understand the cyber world to curb cyber attacks.

Cyber Security Report 2014; for instance, noted that cyber espionage was on the rise in 2013 in Kenya.

“Cyber criminals either sponsored by states or individual organisations are using highly sophisticated and carefully constructed methods to gain access to a network and steal information quietly,” the report denoted.

“There were reports that a local foreign embassy was targeted by a foreign government in an attempt to steal information,” the report added.

The report also said that there was an increase in corporate espionage that was driven by employees within their organisations.

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