The website of the General Department of Mineral Resources has been periodically defaced by hackers, the latest in a number of similar attacks conducted against government websites since early this year.
A picture claiming “Hacked by Ashiyane” overlaying an image of Iran appeared on the department’s website on Sunday, before the website returned to normal by early afternoon.
Bernard Alphonso, director of ASC Information Security Consulting and Training, said a more aggressive stance by the public and private sectors towards information security would send more “reassuring signals”.
Cambodia is presently conducting consultations on a cyber-crime law, but it would be difficult to prosecute hacking in the Kingdom until a law was in place, National ICT Development Authority secretary general Leewood Phu said.
“Not much can be done yet,” he said. “No law, no crime.”
The latest vandalism follows a number of similar attacks staged against Cambodian government websites earlier this year.
On May 25, the Ministry of Commerce website was hit with a message stating “Panic system take over – one Turk against the world”, while the “Iran Black Hats Team” defaced the Ministry of Environment website earlier this year.
Bernard Alphonso said information security awareness is still low in the Kingdom, as many “wrongly assume that Cambodia is not a valid target for hackers”.
However, he stressed it did not appear Cambodia had been singled out in yesterday’s instance, as similar attacks were commonplace across the internet.
Japan International Cooperation Agency programme officer Seng Solady said that the aid organisation had been responsible for building the department website, but had handed over control to the department earlier this year upon its completion.