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India, Bangladesh: Caught In The Cyber War

A cyber war between Bangladesh and India broke out last month as Bangladeshi hackers defaced Indian border security Force's website in protest of the recent border killings by BSF. When news broke out in Bangladeshi media on February 11, 2012 that Indian hacker groups, Indishell, Hindustan Cyber Army and Indian Cyber Army hacked five Bangladesh government ministry websites in retaliation, their Bangladeshi counterparts, Bangladesh Black Hat Hackers (BBHH), Bangladesh Cyber Army (BCA) and 3xp1r3 Cyber Army (3CA) joined in the frenzy. Between February 11 -14 reports claimed that over 400 Bangladeshi sites were hacked by Indian hackers and thousands of Indian websites were attacked by Bangladeshi hackers and many of them were defaced.

Screenshot courtesy Anup Sadi

Anup Sadi informs:

Bangladeshi hackers started cyber war against India on 8 February, 2012. The hackers declared that the Border Security Force of India must stop border killing at Bangladesh-India border.

Sebastian Murdoch-Gibson reported:
 

Young hackers affiliated with both the “Black Hat” group and “Bangladesh Cyber Army” have begun attacks on Indian commercial web sites. These hacker groups claim to have hit targets critical to the continuation of Indian commerce. Some of these sites include stock exchanges.

In keeping with the combative language of the hacker community groups, “Indishell” and “India Cyber Army” launched a retaliatory strike on Bangladeshi web sites.

The attacks of Bangladeshi hackers, who are claiming the complete attainment of all objectives, have followed a popular form similar to that employed by “hacktavist” group Anonymous. The hackers have typically defaced web sites, replacing their content with Bangladeshi flags and images of people tortured by Indian border guards.

The news caught much media attention and even a masked hacker was interviewed by a local TV channel. Netizens were also vocal on this issue.

Anarjo Sangeet at Sachalayatan writes [bn]:

সব মিলিয়ে জানতে পারলাম ভারতীয় ১৫ হাজারেরও বেশিসাইট হ্যাক করেছে বাংলাদেশী এবং বাংলাদেশের পক্ষে অন্য দেশের হ্যাকাররা। ভারতীয় হ্যাকারদের দল ইন্ডিশেল বলেছে, রবিবার রাতের মধ্যে বাংলাদেশীদের এই হ্যাকিং বন্ধ না হলে তারা বাংলাদেশের গুরুদ্বপূর্ণ সব ওয়েব সাইট গুঁড়িয়ে দেবে। তাতে অবশ্য বাংলাদেশের হ্যাকাররা থেমে নেই। বরং দেখতে পাচ্ছি ব্লগে-ফেসবুকে সাধারণ ইন্টারনেট ব্যবহারকারীদের প্রয়োজনীয় নির্দেশনা দিয়ে হ্যাকিংয়ে সম্পৃক্ত করছে হ্যাকাররা।

I have learnt that more than 15000 Indian websites were hacked by Bangladeshis and hackers of other countries supported them. The Indian hackers group “Indishell” said if this hacking spree do not stop within next Sunday, they will deface all important websites of Bangladesh. But that did not deter the Bangladeshi hackers. I am seeing that they are increasing force by recruiting more users via blog and facebook giving directions how to hack.

বাংলাদেশের হ্যাকারদের ক্ষোভ এবং আবেগের সততায় কোনো সন্দেহ পোষণ করছি না আমি। বিএসএফ-এর কর্মকাণ্ড ঘৃণ্য তাতে কোনো সন্দেহ নেই। এর প্রতিবাদ করা দরকার। প্রতিবাদ যাঁরা করছেন তাঁদেরকে অভিনন্দন জানাই। বাংলাদেশের হ্যাকারদের কর্মকাণ্ডও প্রতিবাদ। অবশ্যই যৌক্তিক প্রতিবাদ। প্রশ্ন হচ্ছে, প্রতিবাদের পদ্ধতিটি কতটুকু গ্রহনযোগ্য। অথবা যে পদ্ধতিতে প্রতিবাদ করা হচ্ছে তাতে কী ফলাফল আশা করতে পারি আমরা?

I am not questioning the rage of the Bangladeshi hackers or the honesty of their emotions. There is no doubt that the deeds of BSF is reprehensible. We have to protest. I congratulate to those who protested. The deeds by the Bangladeshi hackers are a kind of protest. A logical one. But the question is, whether their method is acceptable. Or the way it is being protested – can it bring any result?

The blogger also says that this incident should be a learning curve for the Bangladeshi government too who needs to beef up cyber security for its government sites.

Screenshot of a message by Indian hackers

Diganta commented [bn] on the above post:

ওয়েবসাইট হ্যাকিং করা সময় নষ্ট ছাড়া আর কিছু বলে মনে হয় না।

Hacking websites is nothing but wastage of time.

Blogger Kowshik warns [bn] that some political elements, especially the religious party Jamaat-e-Islami are using this cyber war to spread their hatred against India. He warned internet users not to fall into their prey.

The hacking spree ended when the law and enforcement agencies of both the countries became active to catch the hackers. Blogger Kawser Alam reports [bn] that on 27th of February a Bangladeshi hackers group had announced in their Facebook group that the war has ended claiming their success in escalating their cause.

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