Chinese government blamed for massive GitHub DDoS attack

By Scorpus ยท 6 replies
Apr 1, 2015
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  1. chinese github ddos china ddos government attack github

    A couple of days ago GitHub revealed they were the victim of a massive distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, which lasted more than five days and took the website offline several times. According to company officials, it the largest attack the website had ever faced.

    Several reports by security researchers place the blame squarely on Chinese government officials. According to GreatFire, there is simply no way this sort of attack could have occurred without the knowledge of the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC), as the type of attack involved inserting malicious code via the Chinese internet backbone.

    A separate research firm, Netresec, analyzed the fingerprint of the massive DDoS attack and concluded that the Great Firewall of China - a censorship tool used to block many non-Chinese websites in the country - was used to launch it. In their words, the Great Firewall isn't just a censorship tool, "but also a platform for conducting DDoS attacks against targets world wide with help of innocent users visiting Chinese websites."

    The attack was launched by injecting JavaScript code into websites that used Chinese search engine Baidu's analytics tools. Approximately one percent of visitors to such sites received the malicious code rather than the true analytics code, which forced the user's web browser to constantly and viciously reload certain GitHub pages.

    By closely observing the packets of data coming from affected computers, Netresec observed behavior that suggested the JavaScript code was being inserted by someone other than the owners of the websites. This meant that the injection was performed at a high level, with all fingers pointing to the Chinese government themselves.

    It's not surprising that the Chinese government has been strongly implicated as the source of the DDoS attack against GitHub. Pages targeted in the attack were mostly related to avoiding Chinese censorship, and taking down these pages is definitely something the Chinese government would want to do.

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  2. April fools'??
  3. Paul Deemer

    Paul Deemer TS Rookie

    President Obama signed an Executive Order today allowing Sanctions against Chinese and Russian Hackers as well as Corporations. It is time to impose those sanctions on members of the Chinese Government.
  4. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 2,099   +1,273

    It's possible that this is a very clever April fools joke but I'll bit (who am I kidding, I enjoy discussing this).

    At what point of ***-hatery do companies start banning the Chinese IP range outright? I don't think I've ever seen an article about an interesting Chinese website or service (No, them making blatent rip-offs of popular devices do not count). I don't see the harm in blocking a country when they only see to harm you.
  5. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,274   +461

    You only hear about the harm - there is plenty of legitimate traffic between the US and China. It's kind of a love-hate relationship. At home - I block entire countries since I have no need to have transactions with them.

    Nothing of this size is black and white - it's all shades of grey. We can't fall into the "knee-jerk reaction" group of people every time we hear some bad news. You have to think about the consequences of those actions and the consequences of the consequences.
  6. MilwaukeeMike

    MilwaukeeMike TS Evangelist Posts: 2,889   +1,223

    As soon as 'the consequences' and 'consequences of those consequences' fits into 140 characters we'll get right on it. Until then America has the dial set to full on 'knee-jerk' for anything that doesn't fall into the 'don't care' category.
  7. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,663   +1,949

    I'm a regular on GitHub much more than on TechSpot, if you would believe, ever since I took a dive into Node JS 1.5 year ago, away from .NET

    And I must say, the website's availability was quite bad every now and then in the last few days, sometimes the website would say it is busy and not come back for 5 minutes or so.

    Damn those sneaky Chinese communists...

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