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Visa Web Site Down Following Mastercard Hack Attack
Category : General 10 Dec 2010 10:34 AM | Industry News
Visa and MasterCard suspended WikiLeaks's accounts with them on Tuesday, effectively cutting off donations to the site made using those credit cards. Internet payment company PayPal has also shut down WikiLeaks's account, as has Amazon's web hosting arm, whose servers WikiLeaks had been using, and the DNS provider EveryDNS.
Online protestors have launched 'Operation Payback' in defence of WikiLeaks. The site's supporters are targeting those institutions that have abandoned the service, including Mastercard, Visa, PayPal and Amazon. Anonymous, the online protest hivemind, is using software called Low Orbit Ion Cannon to co-ordinate distributed denial of service attack on the companies' websites.
A traditional DDoS attack happens when scores of computers are instructed to visit a website simultaneously. This massive, instantaneous demand can overwhelm a server, rendering service slow or even knocking a website offline entirely, as appears to have happened to MasterCard.
Earlier this week, MasterCard confirmed it would not be processing donations made by its cards to WikiLeaks – the site responsible for leaking a number of confidential US Embassy cable communications to the public.
It now seems to have become the latest target of the WikiLeaks-supporting hacker group ‘Anonymous,’ who claimed to have launched a distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack on the company’s website.
Security experts said that cyber attacks were increasingly being used as a weapon to embarrass large organisations and further attacks were “highly likely”