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Cyber-Attack On Local Bank In Freetown Linked To Iran

Since news filtered across the globe about the killing of the Iranian Military Commander, Quassim Suelemani, by an American drone strike in Iraq, speculations on how it would affect the rest of the world, have been rife on social media and other news sharing platforms in Sierra Leone.

Therefore it came as a bit of an unpleasant surprise for most Sierra Leoneans, when in what appeared to have justified their fears, the Ministry of Information and Communication published a press release about a suspected cyber-attack on the Sierra Leone Commercial Bank.

In the press release, the Ministry said that their attention has been drawn to a cyber incident involving the Sierra Leone Commercial Bank (SLCB) official website ( which occurred on the 5th January 2020, claiming that the compromise is attributed to a group claiming to be “Shield Iran”.

This incident led to a temporal unavailability of the website that is hosted by a service provider based in the USA. However, it has been reported that the incident had no impact on SLCB operations and online banking applications. The web site is an information-only portal with no direct or indirect access to any banking operation assets. It also holds no sensitive information.

According to the release, the incident has been thoroughly investigated by a joint technical team from the Ministry of Information and Communications Cyber Unit and the SLCB Cyber Incident Response Team (CIRT) that have taken immediate and appropriate actions to reinforce existing security measures to mitigate any potential impact.

“The Cyber Security Unit of the Ministry of Information and Communications would like to inform the general public that stringent measures and modalities have been put in place to prevent future attacks on National Critical Information Infrastructure (NCII) in the country” the release stated.


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