Every now and then a government website or server gets it. I wonder what the Italian politicians did this time. In February www.governo.it had a really hard weekend of DDoS attacks.
Apparently, the attack was a direct protest against Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. It seems that DDoS has become the universal tool for hacker groups to express their hurt feelings. According to ANSA (Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata), the group behind the assault is in fact „Anonymous”. This is believed to be the same hacker group which rendered unusable the sites of Visa and MasterCard, back in 2010. Back then the group took credit for the attack, explaining it is retaliation to the acts against Wikileaks.
One reason for the group software experts to attack is the recent sex scandal involving Berlusconi. It seems the group is after the assets of countries with political unrest. The group might also stand behind other government sites’ attacks, including Tunisia, Yemen and Egypt.
It seems like the “Hacktivist” group “Anonymous” moved away from the western front, after attacking Visa, MasterCard, PayPal and Amazon and it is now showing strong discontent with Eastern authorities. Their main weapon remains the DDoS attack. This type of attack remains one of the most effective ways to render sites and network unusable. Smaller sites are practically defenseless. It is a good thing small sites rarely witness the wrath of DDoS. Such attacks are hard to organize due to the number of network devices which need to be utilized.
It seems it is only a matter of time before the next attack takes place. After western sites and eastern governments got a taste of the dark side of the Internet it is not unlikely for Europe to be the next battlefield. There is nothing left but to wonder which country or company will be next.