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Who would do such a grievous deed?

Most know that the internet teems with the high-tech equivalent of the petty crook; waiting to take advantage of the unwitting.  However, far more alarming than a malicious teenager coding malware, in many ways, is the growing amount of nationalistic attacks on the web.  Many of these attacks come from China, and, according to U.S. and British armed forces and intelligence, are government-sponsored.

The attacks have occurred in the public sector-- on the Pentagon, the Department of Homeland Security, and on government contractors-- and now they're occurring in the private sector as well.  Last Thursday, was targeted by takedown attempts after it ran coverage of pro-independence protest events in Tibet.  CNN fought back deploying countermeasures, but this yielded "web attrition" in the form of its services being slow or unreachable to many in Asia.

While CNN states that the scale of problems due to its defensive measures were relatively small, it also acknowledges that the incident was significant.  Said the network, "CNN took preventative measures to filter traffic in response to attempts to disrupt our Web site. A small percentage of users in Asia are impacted.  We do not know who is responsible, nor can we confirm where it came from."

The site came under attack midday Thursday, when it began to experience unexpected problems.  The support staff found that by blocking visitors from certain geographic locations it could mostly silence the attack.  CNN has not released exactly what locations it blocked, but its comments indicate that they were in Asia.  The blocking caused loss of service to some legitimate Asian users, according to the news network.

CNN downplayed the loss-of-service, stating that it was almost "imperceptible" and that "at no time" did the site go down.  By mid-morning Friday, normal operations had resumed.

While CNN has not officially announced who it suspects committed the attacks, the Asian web community was reporting prior to the attacks that in China there were calls for denial-of-service attacks on the site.  The site's coverage of unrest in Tibet and Olympic protests riled many in the Chinese government and many Chinese nationalists.

Chinese bloggers have heavily criticized CNN's coverage of pro-independence movements in Tibet as being "unfair".  CNN says these claims are ridiculous and states, "CNN's reputation is based on reporting global news accurately and impartially, while our coverage through the use of words, images or video always reflects a wide range of opinions and points of view on every story."

For those unfamiliar, a denial of service attack works by an attacker using large groups of computers which they control to send numerous service requests to a website.  Websites can only cope with a certain level of traffic, and at a certain point, the site will become slow and, often, inaccessible.

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By tenzin on 4/21/2008 12:46:09 PM , Rating: 5
I am a regualar user of your web side from Lhasa (the capital city of Tibet) I am Tibetan grown up and educated from India under the guidance of H.H. the Dalai Lama and his exile govenment but last year I came to see my grandma's last face and since from then i can't go back because of some political reasons. Anyway, Its 100% sure that we can't see the true news of world especially related with Tibet issue and Dalai Lama. So, 90% of the Tibeans and the local Chinese they don't have freedom of speech and express even today. We have( i mean included Chinese themself)has no right to see the BBC and CNN Chanels. These are the fundamental right of a human. So, without such basic or fundamental human rights how come we are happy under such a govenment? Don't talk about us Tibetans, chinese themself are fooled by her own mohter by broadcasting untrue news. So, I once from the core of my heart to tell you people " thanking your so much to brought us the real and true news of not only Tibet also world wide. You know now as for myself i can't do anything in Tibet eventhough i had strong Nationalism and Patrioism but i am under heavey military and guns......You know these days the local Chinese Media and TV stations especially in Tibet what they have shown and broadcast in TV are radiculous and 99% of them are not true and they forced the local villgers to speak out what they have already preprepared ones and also for the high ranking personality and religious personalities to spakout such things.thenaks.

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