90% of hackers are locals

PUTRAJAYA: Ninety per cent of the hackers who attacked 200 government-related and private websites since four days ago are locals, said Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili.

He said the police and the relevant agencies were now in the process of identifying them.

"Most of the hackers were locals," he said here yesterday when asked to comment on the group calling itself "Anonymous", which claimed to be based abroad and threatened to attack the government's official portal, www.malaysia.gov.my.

As head of the ministry which promoted safe use of the Internet and handled the infrastructure that dealt with cyber security, Maximus appealed to Malaysians to use the Internet professionally for education and the development of the country.

"You cannot go very far if you indulge in criminal activities in cyberspace," he said.

In a statement yesterday, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission's (MCMC) Network Security Centre said it detected fewer disruptions to websites due to cyber attacks since 5pm on Thursday.

As of 5pm yesterday, 86% of the websites hacked had been restored. In a related development, Commerical Crime Director Comm Datuk Syed Ismail Syed Azizan said police would either call the hackers concerned for questioning or pick them up.

He said the hackers were in the Klang Valley and police were working closely with MCMC and the investigations were ongoing.

"The hackers know we are on to them and we are monitoring their movements to see their next move," he said.

Meanwhile, support for the Facebook page set up to protest the banning and blocking of 10 file-sharing sites has swelled.

When the "1M Malaysians Don't Want SKMM Block File-Sharing Website" page was created on June 10, it had about 400 supporters. By yesterday evening, the number had gone past 30,000.

In comparison, there were 287 supporters of a separate Facebook page that agreed with the blocking of the sites. The "We Support MCMC (SKMM) Blocking Illegal Websites" page was created on June 14.

The Government had said that the file-sharing sites were among the most visited by Malaysians for the illegal downloading of movies and music. Internet Service Providers in the country had been ordered to block access to these sites.

-The Star/Asia News Network