Saturday, July 11, 2009

Die Hard 4 Virus from Korea

Remember Die Hard 4, the Bruce Willis starrer, where the villain tries to take the United States' technological infrastructure offline over a period of 3 days, first taking control of the traffic network system, then taking over the banking and networking system, and finally sabotaging the power grids bringing the mighty US to succumb down to the pressure of the hacker. It seems like the hackers have taken over the plot straight away from the movie and in fact are trying to put that into action.

The thing started in South Korea where an attack by hackers on hundreds of web sites almost clogged the websites in the United States. These cyber attacks have affected the functioning of the major U.S. government Web sites including White House, departments of Homeland Security, Defense and Treasury, and the Voice of America. The hackers have not tried to steal information from these websites giving the information that they just want to suggest to the authorities that if they want they can cripple the might Uncle Sams from the tips of their fingers and thus bringing the United States government functioning to a standstill. As per the South Korean officials, the attacks might have originated from North Korea but no one has been able to confirm it. In fact, to find the originator might be just impossible because the brains behind these attacks just spread the virus from one PC to another and all the PCs, somewhere around 40,000, ask for the same information from a particular website at the same time and thus causing the processing of that information a real mess. This results in slowing down of that particular website and ultimately results in showing the result as website not found.

The motive behind this kind of attack, what I think, is to show to the world that hackers can slow down the functioning of world economy and administration from the tips of their fingers and so the developers be beware of them and install adequate safeguards at the inception of the software logic to fight against them.

© 2009 Ranjan Kumar

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