Thursday, September 23, 2010

Facebook Denial of Service Attack

Update: Okay, this was a little stupid: the apparent DDoS against Facebook today, the Wired article that I found is from 2009 and I misread the date (thought 09 meant September.) Looks like what happened was an internal database snafu. Here’s a CNET article on the subject.

facebook Looks like Facebook is currently down due to a denial of service attack. While it’s been marked as “they were the victim of an attack [this] Thursday morning,” it’s still ongoing and it’s almost 1pm now.

“Earlier this morning, Facebook encountered network issues related to an apparent distributed denial-of-service attack, that resulted in degraded service for some users,” responded Facebook spokeswoman Kathleen Loughlin via e-mail.

We’ve seen this happen before with Twitter—and if it’s the same people who did that, someone wants Facebook offline today. I don’t know yet if Twitter is getting hit with the same DDOS at the same time or if this is simply targeted at Facebook without mangling Twitter.

If anything, it’s a pretty powerful DDOS to wipe out something like Facebook as they already absorb a lot of traffic; then again, that might make them more vulnerable. In the future of cyberwarfare, taking out distributed media-discussion on the Internet will be a useful component when governments and countries want to do things under cover of darkness. Of course, they’ll have to take out more than just Facebook and Twitter to actually make a dent.

Here’s looking forward to it reappearing later today after they get themselves sorted out. I will link the postmortem.

Link, via Wired.


Ntelidakis Antonis said...

Why blame goverments? It could equally be an attack paid by other social networks that have been underpowered after the "facebook hit". "Social network addicts" would run to reactive accounts from older social networks.

Kyt Dotson said...

Well, that just came to mind first out of current events as an example. Noting the behavior of the Great Firewall of China, the activities of Iran vs Twitter, or the very recent blocking of Facebook by Afghanistan.

It's already been supposed that the previous DDOS attacks vs Twitter and Facebook at once seemed to be the activities of a deranged mind because they didn't make sense.

On the side that's not governments what about Black Hats who want to attempt to hold these huge social networks hostage for ransom? This could be their test run to see if they can do it. Unlike many other websites, Facebook and Twitter both rely heavily on visitors being able to reach them and interact with one another. It's a prefect target for a ransom attack.