6 Aug

The politics of DDOS-attacks

Category:Hacking, Security, Web

Twitter has today been the target of a rather crippling DDOS, which has left the site down for several hours, according to Pingdom and Netcraft.

I haven’t seen any word as to the attacker, and that got me to wonder:

Is there politics involved in DDOSes? Twitter knows exactly who’s been hitting their sites, they see the source ip:s. Sure, they might’ve gone through a bunch of zombies here and there, or a botnet or something, but i’m pretty sure they have an idea of what is going on. Can they tell us who it was?

Let’s play with the idea that it was Iran, even governmental forces in Iran who wanted to show Twitter who is the king of the hill? Twitter was and has been instrumental in the dissemination of information from the botched elections in Iran not long ago. Twitter has been blocked in Iran by the government, but there are also other groups working to provide twitter to Iranians, through proxies and anonymizers. I’m not gonna get in to this issue now; the blocking of people from sites so they can’t talk freely, that’s an issue for a different post.

Instead i’m wondering whether Twitter can actually disclose the attackers, should they¬† know them? Or does foreign policy or something else dictate how it’s done? I mean, twitter delayed their service break at the request of the government, so that reporting from Iran could keep on going.

Who knows, but i’d be willing to bet at least someone is thinking about this issue. Can you publicly blame someone, if you are absolutely sure it was them? Or does it fall under the umbrella of politics?

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