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Twitter & Facebook Attack Yesterday Apparently Aimed At A Single, Georgian Blogger

Kind of strange, really, to realize how fragile our electronic infrastructure really is.

The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times are both reporting that yesterday’s attack on social networking sites was aimed at just one blogger from the Republic of Georgia.

From the Los Angeles TimesCyber attack that brought down Twitter was aimed at dissident blogger:

The cyber attack that brought down Twitter for several hours Thursday was aimed at a single blogger located in the country of Georgia.

The blogger was identified as a dissident who uses the name of Cyxymu, according to a source close to Facebook, which was also targeted in the attack.

The attack began about 5 a.m. PDT, with hackers trying to discredit Cyxymu by making him appear to be a spammer, according to analysts at the Sophos online security firm. The initial attack also tried to get a huge number of users to click on the blogger’s Twitter, Facebook and other sites in an attempt to bring them down.

About an hour later, with the blogger sites still operational, the hackers mounted a direct massive attack on the sites. There was such a huge amount of “collateral damage” from the attack, said Beth Jones of Sophos, that Twitter crashed and Facebook’s operation was compromised…

From the New York TimesAttack on Twitter Came in Two Waves:

The meltdown that left 45 million Twitter users unable to access the service on Thursday came in two waves and was directed at a single blogger who has voiced his support for the Republic of Georgia in that country’s continuing conflict with Russia.

Facebook’s chief security officer, Max Kelly, told CNet that the attack was aimed at a user known as Cyxymu, who had accounts on Facebook, Twitter, LiveJournal and other sites affected by Thursday’s cyberassault.

In an interview with The Guardian, the blogger said he believed the strike was an attempt to silence his criticism on the behavior of Russia in the conflict over the South Ossetia region in Georgia, which began a year ago on Friday…

Both articles are very interesting reading.

And again, this gives you an idea of just how fragile information age technology is to outside attack. Something unpleasant to ponder, I think, when thinking of our modern way of living.

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Autumn Sandeen

Autumn Sandeen