Cyber War

I believe we are witnessing what could be the first real cyber war of the XXI century between the supporters of Wikileaks and all the institutions that somehow oppose to it or have withdrawn its support.


Despite several attacks targeting the site wikileaks.org among which are massive Denial of Service attacks, the end of the domain registration, the loss of Amazon hosting services and also the end of services provided by Paypal, Visa and MasterCard, the reality is that the site has shown a surprising vitality and is becoming a real case study in terms of resistance to such attacks.

Before the revelation of the last batch of secret documents, the contents of the site were hosted in two Swedish and one French service providers. Subsequently, the same content was also housed in the cloud storage service from Amazon but this firm quickly changed his mind claiming breach of the terms of service.

Following Amazon's actions the problems with the ISP begun that culminated with the end of the domain registration wikileaks.org by the DNS service provider, the company EveryDNS.

In retaliation, Wikileaks has created various national level domains subsequently redirecting the IP addresses in some cases or using the services of ISPs in several countries.

In order to prevent a repetition of what happened with EveryDNS, ie, having the site dependent on a single DNS service provider, Wikileaks is now using DNS services in eight different countries.

This geographical dispersion makes the site already extremely difficult to shut down, but for now, the site content is hosted mainly in European servers, as soon as the dispersion becomes worldwide, then any attempts to close the site will face increasing challenges.

Moreover, in recent days thousands of mirrors of the original site appeared which means that the content is already so widespread in several domains of the Internet that now escapes the jurisdiction of any legislative body and even with a concerted global effort will be impossible to prevent fragments of this information from reappearing.

The targets of the attacks by this phalanx of supporters have been the Amazon, MasterCard, PayPal and the Swiss firm PostFinance sites due to the freezing of Wikileaks’ accounts.

At the same time, a rising of a global army of activists and Wikileaks supporters is on the march growing every day both in numbers and strength by adding the power of botnets or using tools freely available and free.

Many of those participating in these attacks are using LOIC (Low Orbit Ion Cannon) which is an open source tool that can be used to legitimately perform stress testing of network security, firewalls, etc. This simple tool has been the weapon of choice of the DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) Wikileaks supporters because users can synchronize their attacks through a centralized command server that coordinates and amplifies the attacks.

Synchronizations are being made using Twitter and IRC (Internet Relay Channel) networks where a group recently emerged began the so called "Operation Payback."

But if so far the bulk of the column has been manned by anonymous volunteers with LOIC, now we are in the stage where this army will be reinforced with the battalions of existing botnets of computers already infected and controlled by groups of hackers who are responding to the call to meet the new defensive measures implemented by the targeted sites.
This cyber war may change the face of the Internet as we know it ...