September 11, 2008

Kosovo Albanian Hackers Attack Serbian Parliament Website

Text of report in English by Serbian pro-western Belgrade-based Radio B92 website, on 11 September

Belgrade, 11 Sept -- Kosovo hackers have once again attacked the website of the Serbian parliament.

The site was blocked for less than an hour. A Kosovo flag was put on the website with "Republic of Kosova" written above it in English.

The hackers also posted a notice featuring all the other sites they had attacked, including the official site of the Serbian military.

Slobodan Markovic, an expert adviser to the Telecommunications and Information Ministry, said technicians would be placed in various state institutions who would be responsible for the security of the institutions' internet sites.

The signature page, which reads "Republic of Kosova" and features a map and six white stars together with the signature "Kosova Hackers Group", blocked parliament's site yesterday for about 10 minutes.

Markovic said that the hackers were not geniuses, just people who turned the lack of protection of these sites to their advantage.

"These, quote-unquote hackers use programmes that are readily available on the internet and can be downloaded for free. They take that kind of software and use it to scan, say, all sites that end with the address 'gov.yu.' When these programs find some vulnerability in the software, they use that and change the title of the site or do something similar," he explained.

He told B92 that not all state sites were on the same server that would give them the necessary security, because there was no need for that.

Markovic said that not all sites contained information of the same importance, so that each individual institutions could choose its own provider.

The protection the ministry will provide will be in the form of expert personnel specialized in maintaining internet presentations.

"I think that the ministry will definitely start drawing up guidelines for the security of state institutions' sites. These attacks will not stop completely, but I hope that the level of security and consideration for security in state institutions will change for the better. In other words, for state institutions to see that there is someone who maintains the sites and is responsible for any kind of emergency situation so that these occurrences are brought down to the bare minimum," Markovic said.

He said that no damage had been caused by the attacks. The servers have copies of data from the day before or even an hour before the attacks occurred, which can be rebooted easily.

Markovic said that these incidents, and similar ones by Serbian hackers, should be disregarded because they were pointless and were of no use to anyone.

Originally published by Radio B92 text website, Belgrade, in English 0916 11 Sep 08.

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