e-Romania portal fends off 100,000 cyber-attacks

e-Romania portal fends off 100,000 cyber-attacks


By Daniel Stroe – Bucharest

A government sponsored website which brings together all the public information about central and local administration and other practical data useful to citizens in their relation to state authorities has faced more than 100,000 cyber-attacks over the two months since it was launched for testing, a minister revealed.

The website, which is now being tested till April, have been under constant cyber-attacks since 23 December when it was publicly launched, Communications minister, Dan Nica, said.

“This project is finalized, but, unfortunately, is little known and used. A public institution can do many things through this project. This system’s capacity is very large and it is a pity other investments will be made since all these facilities are in this system” Nica said.

“Now, when the system is being tested, it has undergone 100,000 cyber-attacks over a couple of months, since 23 December, but none succeeded. We did a security audit of the system and it stood” the minister added.

E-Romania, which has cost about 12 million Euros, is a website which allows Romanian citizens to find information about, for instance, all the state funded projects and their phase of deployment, data related to all the 3,188 cities, towns and communes, 24,000 pictures and 60,000 pages of text. The testing period is meant to gather feedback from local administrations, citizens and the media on the functionality of the website and the development potential.

The project has drawn criticism over the slow development and highs costs, the media usually labeling it as the most expensive website ever in Romania. The company entrusted with building the portal has already got more than three quarters of the money, but failed to finish the project in time so that state penalized it.

Last summer, the government corps of control checked the contract which was signed in 2010 and which the central authorities say is unclear. More than half of the money had already been paid under this contract when the current government took power mid-2012, Nica said, so it couldn’t scrap it anymore.

The government wants to promote the website under the title “The Portal of the Participative Democracy” and could be accessed either at www.portaleromania.ro or later at www.romania.eu