Cyber Attack on Indian Stock Exchange


Just when the media has speculated a possible Chinese cyber attack on the power grids operating in South India, an NGO foundation has alleged that the National Stock Exchange(NSE) of India was hit by a cyber attack on February 24th,2021 disrupting most of the operations for the whole day.

While the government of India denies any foreign invasion, MoneyLife Foundation that is into the social work of creating financial awareness and literacy among Indian Populace claims that it has enough evidence to prove the allegation as a fact.

The NSE came to a halt slowly, and the disruptions clearly showed that the stock exchange was brought down by a digital attack, rather than just a simple telecom service failure.

According to a stock trader, the stock exchange was witnessing a network slowdown from 10am in the morning as most of the trading orders were brought to a standstill. And within a few minutes, the disruption spread to other parts of the network that include communication modes between the employees.

At 11:11 am NSE announced that it was closing the financial system for the day because of the slow network that could have been because of a telecommunication glitch out of which MTNL is a backbone for conducting most of the network operations and communications.

As per the update released by SEBI, even the disaster recovery plan did not help the company restart the operations. And that was, although the business continuity plan was being constantly tested on a quarterly basis.

MoneyLife Foundation report claims that the digital halt was because of a cyber attack that could have targeted all the Collocation servers operating in the stock exchange premises. However, it was unclear who launched the attack and whether the Chinese intelligence was involved in the incident like it was witnessed in the attack on a power grid in Mumbai on the same day of February 2021.

Note- Indian government issued a press statement recently saying that the possible of Chinese invasion was high. However, the ICERT team assured that the Indian IT infrastructure managing critical systems was strong enough to thwart cyber threats of any range launched by adversaries.

Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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