INSA Reports 1078 Cyber Attacks, 75 Percent Thwarted

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Information Network Security Agency (INSA), cybersecurity organization of Ethiopia, has reported 1078 cyber attacks on private and public institutions in the past year showing an increase from previous years.

The attacks targeted key infrastructures and institutions in the country and 75percent of the attacks were foiled, and 167 attacks haven’t been addressed because of unspecified reasons while 124 attacks are being addressed, the agency notified.

Malicious software such as ransomware, cryptocurrency miner, and bot malware, have been used by the attackers and they attempted 288 websites attacks, 104 infrastructure scans, 188 systems malfunctioning, 22 cyber infrastructure attacks, and 2 cyber frauds.

Kefyalew Tefera Deputy Director at INSA said that lack of awareness is the reason for 90 percent of the attacks, added to the use of cracked software, the lack of permanent physical and IP addresses of targeted institutions made it difficult for the agency to counter some of the attacks.

Cyber attacks threatened Ethiopia multiple times, in Dec 2019 emergency response teams of the agency were forced to shut down the internet in the country for 20 minutes due to an attack targeted at key financial institutions, infrastructures.

In June INSA reported a foiled attack from Egypt based cybercrime group Cyber_Horus Group, on 13 websites of public and private organizations. The group also claimed the responsibility of the attacks aiming at pressuring Ethiopia to delay the filing of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

Following the failed attempt of the group, INSA has been engaged in providing cyber-security training to various public and private institutions to prevent attacks.