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The Silencing of Krebs on Security (@arstechnica, @dangoodin001)

Dan Goodin at Ars Technica, “Why the silencing of KrebsOnSecurity opens a troubling chapter for the ‘Net”:

On Thursday morning, exactly two weeks after Krebs published his first post, he reported that a sustained attack was bombarding his site with as much as 620 gigabits per second of junk data. That staggering amount of data is among the biggest ever recorded. Krebs was able to stay online thanks to the generosity of Akamai, a network provider that supplied DDoS mitigation services to him for free. The attack showed no signs of waning as the day wore on. Some indications suggest it may have grown stronger. At 4 pm, Akamai gave Krebs two hours’ notice that it would no longer assume the considerable cost of defending KrebsOnSecurity. Krebs opted to shut down the site to prevent collateral damage hitting his service provider and its customers.

“It’s hard to imagine a stronger form of censorship than these DDoS attacks because if nobody wants to take you on then that’s pretty effective censorship,” Krebs told Ars on Friday. “I’ve had a couple of big companies offer and then think better of offering to help me. That’s been frustrating.”

It is stunning to think that the capability exists to take nearly any website offline, and that that capability can be wielded by those with less expertise than ever before. And it seems like not much can be done to stop this. Along with the frequent reports of alleged state-sponsored hacking in the news, this is a troubling trend.

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