Hackers launch large-scale cyber attack on gov’t

Hackers launched cyber attacks on a number of government websites starting at 6 p.m. Thursday, but failed initially to bring some of the websites to their knees because of enhanced security protection.

Anonymous, an online international group of self-described anarchist hackers, targeted websites related to the Telecommunications Directorate (TİB). The hackers, who tried to block access to the websites belonging to TİB, failed to achieve their goals until 9 p.m.

With an election three days away, access to Turkey’s telecoms authority website, identified as a main target in the protest against the planned new Internet filtering system, was blocked.

While authorities worked to limit the disruption, other sites were also blocked including those related to social security, meteorology and several telecoms-related sites.

One of these was the official site where people can report inappropriate Internet content.

Anonymous threatened to attack Turkish government websites around two weeks before Aug. 22, the date when a new filtering system the Turkish government unveiled in May is to enter into force.

The codename of the cyber attacks was “operationturkey” and the first website to become a target was “www.tib.gov.tr,” TİB’s official website. The hackers also attacked the websites of other units operating under TİB, including the Internet Information Report Center (www.ihbar.org.tr), www.guvenliweb.org.tr and www.guvenlicocuk.org.tr. The attacks were characterized as distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks.

They then targeted websites of a number of public institutions and political parties.

Anonymous’ cyber attacks were continuing as of Friday.