28 May 2020
Kabul-- The privately-owned Afghan news website Khaama press was hit with a cyberattack on Thursday after publishing a report on infection of the Afghan security forces with the Corona virus, the media outlet said in an statement.
Khaama press twitted that the news website has been hacked by unknown group:” Regretfully this is to announce our website https://khaama.com has been hacked by an unknown group. We condemn this act regarding it as a cybercrime.”
Head of Khaama press Khushhal Nabizada told the Afghanistan Journalists Center that an unknown group calling themselves ‘Afghan Cyber Army’ is said to be behind the attack. The group demanded to remove a post regarding ‘spreading corona virus among the Afghan security forces’, otherwise it will attack the webiste again.
The Afghan Cyber Army in a post published on Facebook claims the responsibility for the attack. “Spreading Fake news is not good option, we don't like to hunt your server once you delete instead we will secure your server and by the way by rebooting server nothing gonna change.”
and this just small warning we can hack on it but we don't waste our time on Afghani Servers or media.” The group added.
Nabizada said Khaama press cited the New York Times report on ‘infection of 50 per cent of the Afghan security and defense forces with the Corona virus’, which was published on Wednesday May 27. The report said that the infection had overshadowed joint operations and training of Afghan forces by their US trainers.
Earlier, the Afghan ministry of defense rejected Times report and called it inaccurate. It said that after several months of the virus outbreak, vulnerability among the security forces has been kept in its lowest level.
Because of the attack, the outlet publishing its posts on social media accounts until its servers could be secured, Nabizada added.
The Afghanistan Journalists Center condemns the attack on Khaama Press website, calls on Afghan authorities to immediately investigate it and ensure that the president Mohammad Ashraf Ghani’s commitment to upholding press freedom is protected.
The Khaama Press is an online news service for Afghanistan which established in Kabul on October 2010.The media outlet is a private firm that works in the area of reporting news from Afghanistan in Persian/Dari, Pashto and English.