Which of the Big Telecom Operators in Nigeria was Hacked?

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On Sunday, I came across interesting (not to mention alarming) news that the systems of a major telecoms operator in Nigeria has been hacked and been in the control of the hacker for twelve days now. I reproduce the news below:

A major telecoms giant in Nigeria has reportedly been hit by a significant cyber-attack, leading to outages of key services. The hacker, who is demanding $2.5m, claims to have been in control of the network for 12 days undetected. This is still being kept away from mainstream.

The sources don’t want the identity of the telecoms company to be revealed yet. This latest incident demonstrates the continued threat posed by cyberattacks where many Nigerian companies invest in paper security certifications rather than proper security controls.

Based on the information gathered so far, it appears that the company in question does not allocate much of its budget towards recruitment efforts. This potentially indicates a strong reputation in the industry, attracting top talent through word of mouth or “other methods”.

Most Naija companies rely heavily on referrals to fill vacancies. Regardless of the reason, it’s important to adjust their recruitment strategies to ensure that they are able to attract qualified cybersecurity candidates for situations like this. A Zoom incident response meeting [at the operator] is currently underway.

This is big news. Of course, everyone has an idea of which of the telecom operators it is. The news was shared on a Twitter thread and the quotes and comments are full of statements like, “I am sure it is XYZ”.

Which of the big telecom operators in Nigeria was hacked?
Which of the big telecom operators in Nigeria was hacked?

It does not help that all of the major telecoms giants in the country are currently experiencing horrible network quality, so everyone thinks it is their network. But let’s look at a few key things. How many “major telecom giants” do we have? Right now, it is only three. The fourth mobile operator is not a giant, leaving us with just yellow, red, and green.

Among those three, there is one operator that is renown for not investing in recruitment processes and basically running on vibes and clout. I reached out to a few contacts and the sentiments I hold as to which network is the victim of this hack were confirmed. But it is not from me that you will hear that the mother of the teacher is dead (Yoruba people will understand this proverb). As the author said, the operator will be revealed in the near future. This kind of event cannot be kept under wraps for ever. Click the source link below to access the Twitter thread.

References

Roy Biakpara (source)

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2 thoughts on “Which of the Big Telecom Operators in Nigeria was Hacked?”

  1. Also saw this on Twitter..

    Under the control of the hacker for TWELVE days.

    Hard to believe… that bad??

    So, if they want to squeeze them for money, what are they waiting for??

    Squeeze, and relinquish control..

    Reply
  2. Author of this story…why you dey fear to reveal the identity of the hacked teleco? Give us a hint, eg:
    “What is the wavelength of the brand color of the teleci in question?” Express your answer in the wavelength measuring unit known as “Angstroms (Å)”…
    …if you dare!

    Reply

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