THE Harare Institute of Technology says it will not give in to the demands from hackers who attacked their website but instead will focus on restoring the website and email servers held under duress.
HIT Communications and International Relations Manager Mr Tinashe Mutema declared that they will not cough up anything to the hackers whom he likened to terrorists.
By Kudakwashe Pembere
“We are not paying anyone anything. We do not negotiate with terrorists. Our technical team is working flat out to restore the service of which I can assure you our site will soon be back online,” he said.
He rubbished the fact that their system servers and sensitive information was withheld by the hackers. Mutema however clarified that only their website and email servers were affected by the attack.
He added that the hackers leveraged on social media to send the HIT community in panic.
:”It’s just that we only lost 10 hours yesterday where people were failing to communicate with us via email. The damage has been more on the social media because if you see they are generating messages from social media,” said Mutema who reassured students that their information is safe.
He said that the hackers were sending fake messages to people in the institution’s mailing list.
“I saw the email its just a hoax. What was happening is that the hackers were using emails from the email server claiming that they had locked away our sensitive information (1, 3TB) thus demanding a ransom of $999,” noted Mutema.
An independent investigation done by TechnoMag, dismissed the hack as ransomware but likely an internal work.
“That’s not ransomware signature,” said one Kudakwashe Zafevere.
This was further confirmed by HIT which also did their assessment.
“The HIT website was defaced by unknown hackers on Tuesday 20 June 2017. Appropriate measures are being taken to normalise the situation,” he said.