Tuesday 6 January 2015

Giant DDoS Kicks Of North Korea Off The Internet

North Korea was unceremoniously knocked off the internet by DDoS (distributed denial of service) attack. This attack has come into limelight soon after the “proportional response” to the Sony Pictures hack promised by the government of the United States of America. According to the rumors, the attack was supposedly carried out by North Korea and this is what even the FBI believes. On one side if this attack was carried out by the US government, it will become too obvious, so it is safe to believe that this attack would have been carried out by some disgruntled hack-activists such as Lizard Squad or Anonymous. At present, internet has been restored in North Korea but the outage lasted for about 9 hours and 31 minutes.

Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS): 

While there might be some people who are not aware about DDoS, but is no longer unusual for a service to get knocked off by the same. In the last couple of months, both PlayStation Network and Xbox Live have encountered outage issues. But it is quite surprising for an entire country to get knocked off like this. But all this makes sense given to the poor internet connectivity in North Korea.

As far as North Korea is concerned, the state owns the newspapers and TV stations making sure that there is no freedom of information. This clearly indicates the presence of dictatorship and absence of any dealings with democracy. The country has a very tight control over the flow of information.

History has proven that country is easily controllable when all the information/knowledge/dogma generates from a single known point. When it comes to regime of the country, even though internet has all possible required knowledge for humans, it still does not jibe well with the country. Most of the citizens of the country only use intranet and internet is left for higher ups. The country does not depend much on internet but whatever is available is provided by telecommunications giant China Unicom.

Quite frankly, it is very easy to DDoS North Korea. They have a single cable, which connects to the rest of internet. For DDoS a single, low-bandwidth link is trivial but as most of the people in North Korea do not have access to internet, DDoS was not able to achieve what it was meant for.

There are enough speculations doing around about the people or the organization behind the attack. Lizard Squad, seems to have taken the responsibility for the attack on North Korea as they have tweeted, both Xbox Live & other targets have a lot of capacity. They had previously DDoSed the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live services.

The company’s Twitter account has been suspended. Anonymous also has a history of DDoSes but they have openly condemned the whole Sony Pictures/North Korea/The Interview debacle. While we can remember the cyber attack on Sony and the retaliation, which was promised by the US government, such DDoS on North Korea doesn’t make any sense from their side as it hardly makes any impact. While on one side a small period of DDoS will not have any major impact but if it continues for a few weeks or month, it can create serious problems for the country.

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