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Micro-blogging service Twitter has been taken offline in what the company believes is a co-ordinated attack.
The popular site has been subject to a so-called denial-of-service attack, according to the company's status blog.
Ongoing denial-of-service attack 1 hour ago
We are defending against a denial-of-service attack, and will update status again shortly.
Update: the site is back up, but we are continuing to defend against and recover from this attack.
Twitter, Facebook, and LiveJournal have all been under denial of service (DOS) attacks this morning. A DOS attack happens when teams of hackers overload a Web server with requests for data, which causes the server to crash over and over.
Among today’s issues:
- Twitter not working
- Facebook problems
- LiveJournal down for several hours (back up now, 9 a.m)
Twitter released a statement that it was under DOS attack, and CNET.com reports that the attacks started at about 6 a.m. (Pacific).
On Monday, the Gawker Media network (Gawker, io9, Fleshbot, and others) failed under similar attacks.
But who is to blame for Twitter not working, Facebook problems, making LiveJournal go down? Bloggers are suggesting several culprits:
- North Korean hackers
- The ever-mischievous 4chan
- This week’s Defcon hacker/security conference
It’s not so bad that Twitter isn’t working or my Facebook login is broken, but what if hackers decided to attack the network at a hospital or an air traffic controller’s office?
One news story says that Twitter has been used for DOS attacks against Mahmoud Ahmedinejad in Iran, tearing down his administration’s websites. Could the recent outages be related?