Hacker Group Takes Credit for Internet-Crippling DDoS Attacks

A string of DDoS attacks that targeted the DNS (Domain Name System) provider Dyn was historic in its scale due to the sheer size and disruption the attacks caused on Friday last week. Now, a ‘hacker group’ called New World Hackers, who claim to be WikiLeaks supporters have taken credit for the attacks.

The New York Times. Spotify. CNN. Wired. The PlayStation Network. Those are just a handful of plenty of prominent websites that internet users had trouble accessing on Friday following an unprecedented attack on DNS provider Dyn.

The takedown was initiated from a sophisticated DDoS attack that involved “10s of millions of IP addresses,” revealed Dyn.

While the source of the attack is under investigation, since the attack spanned across multiple vectors and locations from the internet. The sheer scale of the attack had Dyn reveal:

We can confirm, with the help of analysis from Flashpoint and Akamai, that one source of the traffic for the attacks were devices infected by the Mirai botnet. We observed 10s of millions of discrete addresses associated with the Mirai botnet that were part of the attack.

One hacktivist group that goes by the “New World Hackers” claimed credit for the attacks. Their reason? Retaliation for the Ecuadorian government’s call to restrict internet access for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

In a text message exchange with Politico, a representative of New World Hackers stated:

The specific target is anything big. We were testing our power at first.

While the claim is yet to be independently verified, what’s unmistakable is the comprehensive wipeout served by the DDoS attacks proving to be a staggering reminder of just how advanced cyberattacks have gotten in this day and age.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters on the very same day that the Department of Homeland Security was already “monitoring this situation.” While he refused to speculate on who might be responsible for the attacks, at a time when the United States government has repeatedly blamed Russia for alleged attempts to interfere with the presidential elections, he summed up the actions of those responsible for the attacks to be “malicious.”

Image credit: Flickr.