By Raymond Carl Dela Cruz

(File photo)

MANILA – The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) on Monday assured that its website is secure following reports of attempted cyberattacks.

In a statement, PCG spokesperson, Rear Admiral Armando Balilo said an investigation into the possible hacking of their website began a month ago after the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) reported an alleged attempt to break into the website.

“So far, we have not monitored anything. Our website remains secure,” Balilo said.

PCG Commandant, Admiral Ronnie Gil Gavan instructed the PCG Public Affairs Services to coordinate with the DICT to ensure that their firewall can thwart cyberattacks.

“While the website is for public consumption, we do not want hackers polluting our site with fake news and making it appear that we authored the spread of falsehoods. We must also protect the site from computer viruses,” Gavan said.

On Saturday, the DICT reported several attempts to hack Philippine government websites, with the latest attempt being a brute force attack to take down the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration website.

DICT Undersecretary Jeff Ian Dy said the “command and control” of the cyberattack was operating from within China.

“We were able to detect that the attackers were coming from China Unicom. So, I think we will need to coordinate with them,” Dy said.

He said the possible involvement of the Chinese government in the attack cannot be ascertained.

He said other targets of threat actors associated with “state-backed” cybersecurity activities include government email addresses particularly the Philippine Coast Guard, National Coast Watch and the DICT. (PNA)