Chinese hackers plotting DDoS against CNN?

Press and blog reports are emerging this morning of an impending DDoS attack this weekend against CNN by Chinese hackers reportedly upset with the network's coverage of the relationship between China and Tibet.

There's some indication that CNN's site may already be experiencing difficulties.

From The Dark Visitor, a blog that tracks "the inside world of Chinese hacker":

Many more Chinese sites, not just hacker, starting to call for the DDOS attack on CNN. Also they are starting to solidify their plans. Here are the details from one posting on the Guilin University of Electronic Technology bulletin board:

Attack will start on 19 April 2008, at 8:00 pm

DDOS attack on

The DDOS attack is going to last over three hours

They need a large number of compromised computers to carry out the attack and are requesting everyone's support in putting to together the number needed

There have been reports already of Internet users having difficulty accessing the CNN site.

Arbor Networks reports that it is monitoring nothing significant at the moment in terms of recent attacks directed at CNN, although there have been some.

These attacks were very small; they barely registered, so it's hard to say that they're the massive onslaught that we may see this weekend. It's possible this is entirely unrelated - a lot of hackers try to bring down major websites like this every day.

Coincidentally, or at least apparently so, CNN recently did a detailed profile of an organization of Chinese hackers:

They operate from a bare apartment on a Chinese island. They are intelligent 20-somethings who seem harmless. But they are hard-core hackers who claim to have gained access to the world's most sensitive sites, including the Pentagon.

The leader of these Chinese hackers says there "is always a weakness" on networks that allows cyber break-ins.

The video portion of that CNN coverage can be seen here.

I'm trying to get some reaction from CNN.

(Saturday update: CNN acknowledges attempt on Thursday.)

(Another update: Guess that was much ado about very little.) 

Welcome regulars and passersby. Here are a few more recent Buzzblog items. And, if you'd like to receive Buzzblog via e-mail newsletter, here's where to sign up.

This Year's 25 Geekiest 25th Anniversaries.

Women 4 times more likely than men to cough up personal info to a stranger.

Adults are too quick to dismiss educational video games.

He called my teen-age daughters slutty. ... Should I hit him?

Talking tech with Cleveland's famous ballpark drummer.

In defense of Caller-ID spoofing.

Google renames the Persian Gulf.

Top 10 Buzzblog posts for '07: Verizon's there, of course, along with Gates, Wikipedia and the guy who lost a girlfriend to Blackberry's blackout.

8 can't-miss tech predictions ... for 1998


Copyright © 2008 IDG Communications, Inc.

The 10 most powerful companies in enterprise networking 2022