Following recent anti-religious remarks by suspended BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma, the Malaysia-based hacktivist group DragonForce has launched a series of cyber attacks against the Indian government. Sharma made some anti religious remarks during a panel discussion about the Gyanvapi Mosque survey, which offended many people all over the world. She quickly apologised on Twitter.
The hacking group has launched a campaign against the Indian government called OpsPatuk, which translates to “strike back.” It is also looking for assistance from “Muslim Hackers From All Over The World, Human Rights Organizations, and Activists (sic).”
Religiously and politically motivated campaigns, such as OpsPatuk, can result in a breach of some sensitive government websites containing PII, military operations, and other government secrets, which, in the wrong hands, can enable targeted attacks on the country and its citizens.
Cyber experts predict that the intensity and volume of such attacks on Indian entities will only increase, and the government and businesses should take adequate precautions to protect their digital assets.
CloudSEK, a Bengaluru-based cyber security firm, found a tweet posted by the Malaysian hacktivist group DragonForce on June 10 calling for attacks on Indian government websites by Muslim hackers all over the world.
According to CloudSEK researchers, the primary goal of the attack was to retaliate against the Indian government for Nupur Sharma’s controversial remarks about Prophet Muhammad. The group shared Indian users’ social media credentials, particularly Facebook access and leading bank username and password combinations, to enable their allies to launch attacks.
CloudSEK discovered multiple threat actors participating in this operation and hacking various Indian websites during the thorough investigation.