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'Anonymous' Attack on PM Website

published  First Published: 10/02/2010
Article written by: News Editor: Nigel Brookson
The government's Cyber Security Operations Centre discovered the attack was coming on February 5 but was unable to stop the parliament house website going offline and Prime Minister Rudd's site becoming home to "Operation Titstorm". Several other ministers sites were also either down, or operating very slowly, including the Minister for Broadband, Stephen Conroy.
You Tube had posted the threatening video warning of the pending attack, but it's unclear as to whether the threat was taken seriously.
Internet protest group Anonymous, known for its regular attacks on Scientology websites, was behind the actions which were led by a so-called denial of service charge on www.aph.gov.au.
Essentially a virus is placed on innocent computers and a master computer then instructs the others to go to a particular website, all at the same time.
Just after 8am (AEDT) today the parliament's website was hit by 7.5 million requests for communication per second, Parliamentary Services Secretary Alan Thompson said.
"We had some advice in the lead-up to today there was going to be some cyber attack," Mr Thompson said.
Senior staff inside the department also had their emails spammed, and High-ranking public servants were telephoned as part of the attack.
While the initial attack was stopped about 9am (AEDT), further attacks continued throughout the day.
The proposed internet filter would crack down on amongst other things pornography.
The Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy's website also experienced a degraded service.
Government agencies identified as potential targets by the group had been briefed on the threat, and were provided with strategies to help stop a hacking attempt, but to no avail.
At 1.30pm (AEDT) the spokesman said the Australian Parliament House website was back online, however, at 2.10pm (AEDT) it was again inaccessible.
Parliament House's fax system was also hit with spam.
Defence Minister John Faulkner said the Cyber Security Operations Centre remained on watch.


news tags

Tags: Cyber attack, Hackers, Anonymous



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