'Hacker' claims responsibility for Department of Environmental Affairs site crash

2018-07-24 17:20

The Department of Environmental Affairs' (DEA) website was down on Tuesday after it was seemingly hacked by someone who also claimed to be behind the attack on the Presidency's website earlier this month.

Users trying to get access to the DEA site were met with an error message instead of the website's home page.

Earlier in June the Presidency's website also went down and Twitter user @VirusSec claimed responsibility on social media site, saying the attack was linked to the lion bone trade.

@VirusSec took to Twitter again on Tuesday afternoon, posting a screenshot of the DEA website with an accompanying tweet.

When a News24 journalist asked the Twitter account if the DEA website was hacked, the response read: "The website has been undergoing a denial of service the last past 2 days (sic)".

After pressing for more details, News24 got the response: "A denial of service is caused when many servers attack another server. It's considered a 'Denial of Service'."

DEA spokesperson Albi Modise told News24 that at this point, the website error message could not be attributed to hacking.

"I am not aware of any hacking," said Modise.

The same account also claimed responsibility in August 2017 for taking down the government of South Africa's website, tweeting: "This is for allowing the sale of rhino horn and lion bones."

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