Presidency website down as hacker appears to link attack to lion bone trade

2018-07-19 19:42

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The Presidency website was down on Thursday evening as a hacker seemingly claimed responsibility on Twitter and said the attack was linked to the lion bone trade.

President Cyril Ramaphosa's spokesperson Khusela Diko told News24 that they were aware the website was down but not aware of any hacking.

"We are still looking into why it is down," she said.

The environmental affairs department announced this week that it had approved an annual quota of 1 500 lion skeletons for export, amid opposition from some non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and conservationists.

Hacker @VirusSec posted a photo of the website homepage along with the words "Greed has taken over the African presidency long ago" and hashtag #OpFunKill, which seemed to be linked to a campaign which aimed to protest against the killing of animals.

When a Twitter user asked if the site was attacked because of the lion bone trade, the hacker replied "true".

The account also posted a screenshot on Twitter that appeared to show computer code attacking the presidency's domain.

It attached President Cyril Ramaphosa's official twitter handle to make sure his team could see the screenshot.

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


Read more on:    cyril ramaphosa  |  cyber attack

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