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Friday, September 02, 2005

DoS attack against FDB is now nation-wide news

The Age and Sydney Morning Herald have just uploaded the following story:

Anti-racist website attacked

By Sam Varghese
September 2, 2005 - 12:09PM

An Australian anti-racist website came under a sustained distributed denial of service earlier this week and the people who run the site suspect the perpetrators may be from across the Tasman.

Sydney activist Mat Henderson-Hau, who runs the website Fightdemback, said the attacks had begun on Monday and knocked the site offline.

"We suspect someone in New Zealand but we cannot say anything definitely now," he said.

The site is hosted by a small Melbourne provider which had to take it offline to avoid the data flood affecting other clients, according to a tech admin who works with the group, who did not want to give his full name.

He said the provider was wary of commenting as it may affect his business.

Henderson-Hau said the site had been running for about seven months and though there had been two attacks before this one - in April and June - both had been minor compared to this week's.

The attacks lasted 24 hours.

The site is still offline and the group is looking for other hosting arrangements. A blog has been set up as a temporary measure.

Henderson-Hau said the provider had informed him that the attack was of the magnitude of 2 megabits per second. The tech admin said it appeared that some kind of botnet had to be involved in order to send such a flood of data.

A botnet is jargon for a collection of software robots, or bots, which run autonomously.

Botnets are used to mask the source of attacks and are common in DDoS attacks.

Earlier this year, the German Honeynet Project estimated that up to a million computers, the majority running Windows XP and Windows 2000, are infected with bots and can be harnessed by miscreants to launch attacks.

The tech admin said as the FightDemBack crowd had no back-ups, they were now rebuilding the site. He said it would probably go up over the weekend.

Community donations are used to fund the campaign.

He said they had asked the provider for logs in order to find out where the attacks originated. However, he said, the provider was asking for payment before releasing anything, including their own backups.

He said there may be a possible connection to a person whom the group had unmasked in Alice Springs for posting racist posters there.

The man lost his job as a result and had vowed revenge.

posted by Fightdemback @ 12:58 PM