GoDaddy outage the result of attack on DNS

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Websites hosted on hosting provider GoDaddy went down for several hours on Monday, and a hacker who claims to be a supporter of the Anonymous group has claimed responsibility for it. The @AnonyOps Twitter account that is most frequently associated with the Anonymous group though, has sought to distance itself from what it said was the work of one individual.

The main GoDaddy site has since come back up, and a notice explained that GoDaddy.com and associated customer services have "experienced intermittent outages." According to the company, services were restored to the bulk of its customers in about 4.5 hours.

No technical details were offered, though the attack apparently focused on knocking out the company's DNS, or Domain Name System, servers. While the number of affected customers is not known, it is important to note that the company manages more than 48 million domain names and has more than 9.3 million customers, according to a report by Computerworld.

This attack against GoDaddy mirrors the August DDoS attack on the DNS servers belonging to AT&T (NYSE: T), which caused some business customers to experience intermittent disruptions in service.

The DNS has the task of translating "human-readable" domain names into the IP addresses used by computers. If it is unavailable, it will cause most Internet software to fail, and also can impact the sending and receiving of emails. This is the reason ISPs and hosting providers routinely deploy secondary or even tertiary DNS servers as backups.

Indeed, experts have long warned that the current DNS infrastructure is vulnerable to attacks and exploitation by hackers. In this instance, the fact that a lone operative was able to setup a DDoS attack of such magnitude--to disrupt the smooth operation of possibly millions of sites--is sobering indeed. Clearly, businesses need to consider setting up more robust DNS infrastructures, instead of relying on free DNS hosting.

For more:
- check out this article at Computerworld

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