SITA renders government site unhackable by shutting it down

Following the hacking of three South African government websites, the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) has simply shut down one of them.


The Presidential National Commission (PNC) and the Department of Social Development websites were the two of the three sites defaced by hackers to be restored. When the hacked websites were accessed in December last year, a graphic message reading: “Website hacked by H4ksniper” popped up.

HumanIPO reported the breach in December and identified a Moroccan hacker to be responsible. The hacker claimed the incident was in response to South Africa’s support for a Western Sahara liberation group.

The National Population Unit’s website was the third to be hacked, but has not been restored and simply shut down without resolving security breaches. Access is denied to users trying to access the site. SITA hosts these websites and by shutting it down they have rendered it unhackable.

SITA said no state information was at risk after the security breach. “SITA is confident of its work and capacity to secure government information and this remains the bedrock of its operations,” said acting CEO Khumbudzo Ntshavheni.

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