The world of internet saw a new wave of attack called DDoS attacks that affected the West Coast of the United States and Europe. Dyn, a company that controls much of the internet’s domain name system (DNS) infrastructure was the victim of this attack. The attack brought down sites including, Netflix, Twitter, Spotify, Reddit, CNN, PayPal, Pinterest and Fox News – as well as newspapers including the Guardian, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, for almost an entire day.
The issue was distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, in which a network of computers infected with special malware, known as a “botnet”, coordinated into bombarding a server with traffic until it collapsed under the strain. The DDoS attack used malware called Mirai to infect tens of millions of internet-connected devices found in businesses and homes to disrupt service at many of these popular sites.
Brian Krebs, an independent security researcher, predicts, “The internet will soon be flooded with attacks from many new botnets powered by insecure routers, IP cameras, digital video recorders and other easily hackable devices”. Major internet infrastructure companies have been the subject of a series of significant DDoS attacks that looked like someone was trying to test their systems for weaknesses. Nobody has claimed responsibility for the attack though it is assumed to be some teenagers looking to cause mischief or done by someone learning to take down the internet.
This brings to our attention the potential danger of having billions of devices connected to the internet with little or no cybersecurity protections. Read more.