Myanmar's Internet Under Cyberattack

Earlier this week, Myanmar dropped off the internet. A massive Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack on the countries servers brought their network to a halt. Exactly why, no one knows. From the AFP:

Internet users in the military-ruled country have reported slow connections and sporadic outages for more than a week, and some suspect the junta may be intentionally disrupting services to block news flowing out.

Web service providers have blamed the troubles on outside attacks.

"Our technicians have been trying to prevent cyber attacks from other countries," a technician from Yatanarpon Teleport Co. told AFP on condition of anonymity.

The country holds general elections this weekend for the first time in 20 years. Elections that many think are a sham. The BBC is one of the few outlets to get a reporter in the country (they've banned journalists) and he spoke with Aung San Suu Kyi's spokesman. She's called for a boycott of the elections.

This election is like a feast which is poisoned, we cannot join the feast because poisoned fruits are served. It is just to prolong military rule. Only by boycotting the elections can we put pressure on the military rulers.

Craig Labovitz at Arbor Networks has done quite a bit of analysis on the attacks. He says the DDoS is more than enough to take down Myanmar's internet.

While DDoS against e-commerce and commercial sites are common (hundreds per day), large-scale geo-politically motivated attacks — especially ones targeting an entire country — remain rare with a few notable exceptions. At 10-15 Gbps, the Burma attack is also significantly larger than the 2007 Georgia (814 Mbps) and Estonia DDoS. Early this year, Burmese dissident web sites (hosted outside the country) also came under DDoS attacks.



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