Kenya Cyber Attack – Reasons, Impact and Future threats

Last week, Kenya has faced a Cyber attack which effected private companies and government entities. The extent of the cyber attack is yet known but it is being understood that the attack has disrupted government online platforms and its services for almost over a week now.

Kenya Cyber Attack - Reasons, Impact and Future Threat Preparedness
Kenya Cyber Attack – Reasons, Impact and Future Threat Preparedness

There are various questions over this attack in Kenya, Africa, like who was behind this cyber attack, was it a person, a group or an organization.

Table of Contents

Extent of Kenya Cyber Attack

The government of Kenya confirmed an attack on its eCitizen portal. The eCitizen portal is one of most used websites of the Kenya Government and it is believed that more than 5,000 agencies use and access data from the eCitizen Portal. An attack on a huge portal like this raises questions on the privacy and security over consumer data in Kenya.

The After Effects

The cyber attack caused disruptions in the following online services:

  • Issuance and Renewals of Passports
  • e-visa issuance for foreign travelers visiting Kenya
  • Issuance of driving licenses, identification cards, national health cards
  • Train booking services
  • Payment gateway issues
  • Mobile-money banking and payment services

M-Pesa is one of the mobile banking services platform that was effected by the attack. Many consumers have reported difficulties in availing online mobile banking services. The owner of M-Pesa has not yet spoken whether the company was attacked or not, but it is highly speculated that M-Pesa was part of the cyber attack victim entities.

Safaricom, the company behind M-Pesa, hasn’t said anything official yet, so we’re not sure if they got hit too.

Impact of Cyber Attack in Kenya

You might think cyber attacks are common, but you will be shocked to know that a big chunk of Kenyans use mobile money, like 76%, and about 67% are all about the mobile internet. So yeah, it hit a lot of people.

The government’s saying no data got swiped, but the hackers did claim they got their hands on passport info. They’re trying to sort things out, but the system’s still acting wonky, slowing things down and making it hard to use.

Who created this Cyber Attack

There’s this group calling themselves Anonymous Sudan, claiming they’re the ones pulling the strings. They’re all about backing Sudan and are pretty vocal about not wanting anyone messing with their country. But some folks think they’re tied up with Russia somehow.

The group’s been causing trouble for a bit now, mostly by messing with stuff but not really being super fancy about it. They warned about messing with Kenya because they reckon Kenya’s been sticking its nose where it doesn’t belong in Sudan’s business.

Reason for the Attack

The Sudanese government’s not too keen on Kenya getting involved in their stuff, especially with President Ruto trying to sort things out between their military and paramilitary groups.

There’s been some back-and-forth online between Sudanese and Kenyan bigwigs, but who knows where it’s all going.

How did they attack

Experts are saying this attack was mainly a DDOS thing, you know, where they flood the system with traffic till it keels over. Some folks think there might be insiders helping out since hitting the right spots with a DDOS ain’t exactly a shot in the dark.

Kenya’s got some cybersecurity muscle, but this attack shows how being too cozy with digital stuff without beefing up security can bite you in the behind. Guess it’s a wake-up call for everyone to take cybersecurity seriously, especially if you’re going all-in on digital.

[Reference: BBC]