News / Science & Technology

China Hit by 'Largest Ever' Hack Attack

A man uses a computer at an internet cafe in central Beijing, China, December 28, 2012.A man uses a computer at an internet cafe in central Beijing, China, December 28, 2012.
x
A man uses a computer at an internet cafe in central Beijing, China, December 28, 2012.
A man uses a computer at an internet cafe in central Beijing, China, December 28, 2012.

Related Articles

China's Ex-leader: Nothing to Fear from Disputes with US

In a rare return to public life, Jiang Zemin met with former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, saying honest dialogue is needed

UN Warns on Mobile Cybersecurity Bugs to Prevent Attacks

Researchers say at least 500 million phones vulnerable

3 US Media Outlets Hacked by Syrian Gov't Supporters

Certain news links at 'Washington Post,' CNN, 'Time' redirected to website of Syrian Electronic Army, which backs Assad regime
Large parts of China’s Internet went dark this past weekend as the country came under what the Beijing government is calling the “largest ever” hack attack on Chinese sites.

According to The China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC), which “operates and administers country code top level domain of .cn and Chinese domain name system,” the denial of service, or DDoS, attacks started at 2:00 a.m. local time Sunday morning. CNNIC said the initial attack was followed two hours later by a larger attack. Both focused on websites with the .cn extension.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Matthew Prince, the chief executive of CloudFlare, a company that provides Web performance and security services for more than a million websites, said China saw a 32 percent drop in Internet traffic for domains in the company’s network during the two-hour attack.

CNNIC apologized to users for the attack and promised to strengthen security in the future. The organization did not elaborate on who might have been behind the attacks.

“It's just another example that China does indeed have its own enemies who attempt to disrupt its Internet operations,” said Jeffry Carr, CEO of Taia Group, a cybersecurity firm. “Such enemies include hackers from Taiwan, India, Tibet, the Middle East and, of course, the United States.”

Carr added that denial-of-service attacks do not require a lot of technical know how.

"Denial-of-service attacks can be as simple as downloading a free tool like Anonymous's LOIC product  or one can visit any number of hacker forums where DDoS services are cheaply available for hire."

Christopher Burgess, CEO of Prevendra, Inc., says the attack could have also have come from within China.

“The prompt response and resolution by China's CNNIC and lack of attribution provided by the CNNIC of attack origin warrants further monitoring. It begs the question, was this a self-inflicted wound by a Chinese entity, such as one of those identified by Mandiant in their report earlier in 2013 or an attack originating by a criminal element,” he said.

While China is known for efficient Internet censorship, some question the country's cyber defenses.

"The attack points out the vulnerability of the entire Chinese web to cyber attack from the outside," said Matthew Aid, an independent intelligence analyst. "If all Internet sites ending in .cn can be taken down by nothing more sophisticated than a conventional denial-of-service attack, the Chinese Internet system is more vulnerable than we previously believed. Clearly Chinese cyber defenses are not what they should be"

Domains with the .cn extension appeared to be working normally on Monday.

You May Like

VOA Exclusive: Interview With Myanmar President Thein Sein

Thein Sein calls allegations that minority Muslim Rohingya are fleeing alleged torture in Rakhine state a media fabrication More

Video Better Protective Suit Sought for Ebola Caregivers

Current suit is uncomfortable, requires too many steps for removal, increasing chance of deadly contact with virus More

UN Rights Commission Investigates Eritrea

Three-member commission will start collecting first-hand information from victims and other witnesses in Switzerland and Italy next week More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concernsi
X
November 19, 2014 11:39 PM
The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.
Video

Video What Jon Stewart Learned About Iran From 'Rosewater'

Jon Stewart, host of the satirical news program "The Daily Show" talks with Saman Arbabi of Voice of America's Persian service about Stewart's directorial debut, "Rosewater."
Video

Video Lebanese Winemakers Thrive Despite War Next Door

In some of the most volatile parts of Lebanon, where a constant flow of refugees crosses the border from Syria, one industry continues to flourish against the odds. Lebanese winemakers say after surviving a brutal civil war in the 1970s and 80s, they can survive anything. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon.
Video

Video China's Rise Closely Watched

China’s role as APEC host this week allowed a rare opportunity for Beijing to showcase its vision for the global economy and the region. But as China’s stature grows, so have tensions with other countries, including the United States. VOA’s Bill Ide in Beijing reports on how China’s rise as a global power is seen among Chinese and Americans.

All About America

AppleAndroid