Cyber Attack on #Kenya prompts government to grant Visa on Arrival again

(Posted 27th July 2023)


Kenya’s government websites but also websites of private companies have come under heavy cyber attack, prompting a failure of access to many key institutions and service providers.

In an initial reaction has the Kenya government therefore decided to throw open the Visa on Arrival system again, ensuring the flow of visitors to the country.

Companies affected are among others Safaricom, MPesa – a key digitial payment platform – but also the Kenya Power company where the purchase of tokens was made difficult. Banks like Stanchart, Stanbic, and NCBA also confirmed that web access to their sites and services was made difficult if not impossible.

Interior Cabinet Secretary Professor Kithure Kindiki commented on the situation: “Our Cybersecurity Response Team has since established that the momentary disruption was caused by an attempted cyberattack on the platform through Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) technique, which involved flooding the target system with massive traffic from multiple sources simultaneously. Consequently, the platform was overloaded and rendered unavailable to genuine users thereby causing interference of the services” before going on to say: “However, no data was accessed or lost during the incident, owing to the comprehensive data protection measures put in place by the responsible agencies. “All members of the public, businesses, government institutions, and private entities are advised to enhance their cybersecurity preparedness and prioritize cybersecurity as part of the collective responsibility to ensure a safe cyber environment in the country.”

A hitherto little known group calling itself Anonymous Sudan has taken responsibility for the attack although there is speculation that the origin of the attack may be situation elsewhere in locations and by groups better known to hack government and private companies websites for ransom.

Prof. Dr. W. H. Thome