We walked into our tech support office this morning and guess what? Our whole customer check-in and check-out system was down! We dug up some info and found out that the U.S. was under a massive cyber attack this morning. Scary! Luckily for us, it only lasted for 15-20 minutes since we have a redundant network. But, of course!
But, what really happened? And how can you protect yourself like we did going forward?
What happened? Folks came into their offices and many websites and CRM systems did not load. This included Amazon, Twitter, Spotify and others. These sites suffered a DDoS attack, or in layman’s terms, these sites’ were overwhelmed with useless data and connections which prevents normal users to access them. Think of the Apple site when it’s 3AM in the morning and you’re trying to buy the latest iPhone. And quadruple that with fake connections to the site. With such an overload, the site cannot be accessed.
By 9:37AM today, October 21, 2016, all services were restored and back to normal. No explanation of how the sites were restored or brought back to normalcy has been provided. I’m assuming that the DNS host changed over its affected sites to a redundant DNS infrastructure. I just can’t imagine that they fixed it so quickly. Who knows? In any case, it is fixed which is good news. UPDATE: As of 12:57PM, these affected sites are still having issues. Sometimes the work and other times they do not. So, my initial gut was right. It was too quick of a supposed “fix.” So, if these sites are still down for you, then they are still being attacked and try back later.
How can you protect yourself from an outage going forward? Well, sometimes you can’t is the blunt truth. But, if you want to be proactive, it is best to have to Internet Service Providers. That way, if one goes down, you can use the other. In setting this up, you can purchase a firewall to instantly toggle your Internet to the working provider. Or you can save a few bucks and hire an Internet setup technician to take care of this for you.