Mysterious Friday Cyber Attack Disrupts Countless U.S. Websites

October 21, 2016 5:35 pm  |  Comments: 0  | Views: 7088
    

A massive cyberattack hindered access to many major websites across the internet on Friday.

On Friday morning, Dyn — a company that hosts domain name systems — announced it has been the subject of a cyberattack that caused major problems for numerous websites. People reported issues with Twitter, Spotify, SoundCloud, Vox Media sites, Airbnb and numerous other sites.

Dyn said at 9:20 a.m. ET that it resolved an attack that began at 7 a.m. ET Friday. But at 11:52 a.m. ET, the company said an attack had resumed. As of late Friday afternoon, users were still having trouble accessing a variety of major web destinations.

Although the source of the Friday’s attack is still not completely clear, security experts have so far learned that the attack was launched by a botnet based off of the Mirai base code, which is used to hijack internet-connected devices and use them in DDoS attacks.

DDoS stands for “distributed denial of service” and is a common tactic used by hackers to take down internet-connected servers. In a DDoS attack, malicious users build a network of computers that then send massive amounts of traffic to particular servers with the goal of denying the use of those servers to other users, according to Cisco.

Dyn said after the attack began at 7 a.m., the company “began monitoring and mitigating a DDoS attack against our Dyn Managed DNS infrastructure. Some customers may experience increased DNS query latency and delayed zone propagation during this time. Updates will be posted as information becomes available.”

“Hackers have no rules. One of the problems we have is that they move much faster than cyber-defenders. A DDoS attack can be launched in literally seconds, or under an hour if it’s coordinated by a larger group,” Steven Morgan, founder of the research firm Cybersecurity Ventures, told Mashable. “Right now, we’re in the phase of figuring out where did this come from.”

Here is a list of websites affected by the attack that Gizmodo put together:

  • ActBlue
  • Basecamp
  • Big cartel
  • Box
  • Business Insider
  • CNN
  • com
  • Etsy
  • Github
  • Grubhub
  • co.uk
  • HBO Now
  • com (iHeartRadio)
  • Imgur
  • Intercom
  • com
  • Okta
  • PayPal
  • com
  • Pinterest
  • Playstation Network
  • Recode
  • Reddit
  • Seamless
  • Spotify
  • Squarespace Customer Sites
  • Starbucks rewards/gift cards
  • com
  • The Verge
  • Twillo
  • Twitter
  • com (lol)
  • Weebly
  • com
  • Wix Customer Sites
  • Yammer
  • Yelp
  • com
  • Zoho CRM
  • Credit Karma
  • Eventbrite
  • Netflix
  • com
  • Fox News
  • Disqus
  • Shopify
  • Soundcloud
  • io
  • com
  • ConstantContact
  • com
  • New York Times
  • com
  • com
  • com
  • com
  • com
  • Wikia
  • org
  • com
  • com
  • BBC
  • Elder Scrolls Online
  • Eve Online
  • PagerDuty
  • Kayak
  • com
  • Speed Test
  • Freshbooks
  • Braintree
  • Blue Host
  • Qualtrics
  • SBNation
  • com
  • com
  • com
  • com
  • com
  • IndieGoGo
  • Fortune
  • com
  • com
  • Survey Monkey
  • Paragon Game
  • Runescape

The Department of Homeland Security and the FBI are aware of the attacks and are continuing to investigate “all possible causes.”

Sources: Mashable, USA Today

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