2012-08-08 WikiLeaks battles ongoing DDoS attack


WikiLeaks has been under sustained DDoS attacks for five days now. The first notice came on August 3, 2012, with the following tweet:

Most WikiLeaks mirrors have been brought offline as well. Today, the WikiLeaks-endorsed website Cabledrum also came under attack, with their mirror of the WikiLeaks website being down as well.

WikiLeaks' donation portal through French non-profit FDNN was also taken offline, shortly after WikiLeaks linked to it as a way to donate while the WikiLeaks website is offline.

WikiLeaks offered their speculation of possible reasons for the timing of the attacks:

  • Attacking under the cover of the London Olympics.
  • An upcoming WikiLeaks release.
  • Ongoing releases of the Syria Files and the Global Intelligence Files.
  • A cable which reports on an assassination attempt on Chinese leader Hu Jintao's son and another killing at the top of the Chinese Communist Party. This cable was recently reported on by The Epoch Times and China's Forbidden News.

Death and Taxes suggested that the attack may be coming from the U.S. Government, or another government which holds an anti-WikiLeaks stance.

WikiLeaks-endorsed news site WL Press currently has a mirror which remains accessible. They also provide instructions and a torrent for those who wish to host their own WikiLeaks mirror. (Edit: WL Press also offers a .onion mirror at http://isax7s5yooqgelbr.onion/, which is accessible only through Tor).

To support WikiLeaks through these attacks and help them acquire more bandwidth, you can donate through purchase of WikiLeaks merchandise or their "Beat the Blockade" fundraising CD.

UPDATE 2012-08-08 08:09 BST

The President of FDNN confirmed that they are under DDoS attack.

Currently, they have brought their WikiLeaks donation webpage back up, but they warned of it coming down again with another large-scale attack.

UPDATE 2012-08-08 08:16 BST

Shortly after FDNN announced they were back online, they were yet again taken down with a DDoS attack.

UPDATE 2012-08-08 09:40 BST

WL Central was down for a short period of time, as was Justice for Assange. WikiLeaks, FDNN, and Cabledrum all remain offline.

UPDATE 2012-08-08 18:10 BST

WikiLeaks and FDNN are back online. Although, they are not accessible by everyone.

UPDATE 2012-08-10 18:27 BST

Today, through a series of tweets, WikiLeaks explained in detail the attack they are facing:

More information on the ongoing DDoS attack against WikiLeaks related sites and donation infrastructure follows:

  • The attack is well over 10Gbits/second sustained on the main WikiLeaks domains.
  • The bandwidth is used is so huge it is impossible to filter without specialized hardware, however...
  • the DDoS is not simple bulk UDP or ICMP packet flooding, so most hardware filters won't work either.
  • The rage of IPs used is huge. Whoever is running it controls thousands of machines or is able to simulate them.
  • We have even tried moving behind http://Cloudflare.com but Cloudflare has re-emptively banned WikiLeaks. Living in the wild wild west.

Despite the ongoing DDoS attack, WikiLeaks continues to publish more Global Intelligence Files. The most reliable way to current access new releases is through the WikiLeaks .onion mirror at http://isax7s5yooqgelbr.onion/ (accessible only via Tor).

UPDATE 2012-08-10 19:03 BST

For journalists researching the attack, WikiLeaks recommended contacting http://prq.se/, http://fdn2.org/, and http://wikileaks-press.org/, who have all been hit by the attack as well.

WikiLeaks further commented on the matter:

The DDoS attack against WikiLeaks has also gone after our donations infrastructure, the Fund for Network Neutrality, who also fund others. Attacks on WikiLeaks increase donations, so the more we need to fight, the more cash reserves we have to fight. But now that is prevented.

Dazzlepod offers a regularly updated search engine for the GI Files.

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