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Mass wave of cyber attacks target Spotify, Twitter, Soundcloud

Experts believe it is the work of professionals and could have been planned months in advance

  • Harrison Williams
  • 21 October 2016

A series of cyber attacks swept through the East Coast on Friday, leaving many internet users unable to access accounts on Spotify, Soundcloud, Twitter, Netflix, Amazon, Tumblr and Reddit. In addition, online publications like the Financial Times and The New York Times, among others, also experienced blackouts.

It is being reported that the first cyber attack occurred at around 7:10am Friday, which was later resolved closer to 9:30am. Then a second wave of attacks soon followed.

What caused the websites to go down stemmed from an attack on Dyn, a cloud based internet performance service that hosts domains of many popular websites including those mentioned above. It is still unclear if the target was Dyn specifically or the websites it hosts.

Dyn posted on its website to confirm the attack, revealing that "this attack is mainly impacting US East and is impacting Managed DNS customers in this region. Our Engineers are continuing to work on mitigating this issue".

According to Markus Jakobsson, the chief scientist at a computer security firm called Agari, this is not the work of amateur hackers: “This not just an instant job, this is something that was probably worked on for weeks if not for months by really competent people”.

This could be particularly troubling for those who use Spotify, Amazon and Netflix as important financial information could be at risk, but it's still too early to tell at this point.

At the time of publication it seems as though internet service has stabilized. More information is sure to surface in the near future.

Harrison is Mixmag's East Coast Editor. Follow him on Twitter here

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