Mar 2, 2007

Hackers hit key Internet traffic computers

Posted by in category: cybercrime/malcode

Here is a piece of news from early last month, via CNN:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Hackers briefly overwhelmed at least three of the 13 computers that help manage global computer traffic Tuesday in one of the most significant attacks against the Internet since 2002.

Experts said the unusually powerful attacks lasted for hours but passed largely unnoticed by most computer users, a testament to the resiliency of the Internet.

Behind the scenes, computer scientists worldwide raced to cope with enormous volumes of data that threatened to saturate some of the Internet’s most vital pipelines.

Experts said the hackers appeared to disguise their origin, but vast amounts of rogue data in the attacks were traced to South Korea.

The attacks appeared to target UltraDNS, the company that operates servers managing traffic for Web sites ending in “org” and some other suffixes, experts said. Company officials did not immediately return telephone calls from The Associated Press.

Among the targeted “root” servers that manage global Internet traffic were ones operated by the Defense Department and the Internet’s primary oversight body.

It is not likely that the South Korean government or a large company had anything to do with the attack. The crime was probably perpetrated by a relatively small hacker group, which underscores the potential for asymmetric cyberwarfare. I’m happy that the federal government has many people on the full-time job of defending cybersecurity.


Comments — comments are now closed.

  1. Amen to that!

    It’s interesting that hackers want to bring down the same entity that enables them to “conduct their hacking.”

    It’s like biting the hand that feeds you, or cutting off ones own lifeline.

    Glad to see Uncle Sam having our interests at heart, defending us online as well as off.