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Government Websites Attacked; North Korea Suspected

A widespread computer attack that began July 4 knocked out the Web sites of the Treasury Department, the Secret Service and other U.S. agencies, and South Korean government sites also came under assault.

South Korean intelligence officials believe the attacks were carried out by North Korean or pro-Pyongyang forces. U.S. officials so far have refused to publicly discuss details of the attack or where it might have originated.

The Washington Post reported Wednesday that its own Web site was among several commercial sites also hit.

The U.S. government sites, which included those of the Federal Trade Commission and the Transportation Department, were all down at varying points over the holiday weekend and into this week. South Korean Internet sites began experiencing problems Tuesday.


Asked by AprilDJC at 10:30 AM on Jul. 8, 2009 in Politics & Current Events

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Answers (9)
  • Well, that explains the big deal about the missle tests, diversion. This is concerning but not the first or last time our govts networks have been or will be hacked. China has done it a couple of times.


    Answer by Friday at 11:58 AM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • Others familiar with the U.S. outage, which is called a denial of service attack, said the fact that the government Web sites were still being affected three days after it began signaled an unusually lengthy and sophisticated attack.

    Attacks on federal computer networks are common, ranging from nuisance hacking to more serious assaults, sometimes blamed on China. U.S. security officials also worry about cyber attacks from al-Qaida or other terrorists.

    This time, two government officials acknowledged that the Treasury and Secret Service sites were brought down, and said the agencies were working with their Internet service provider to resolve the problem. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak on the matter.

    Answer by AprilDJC at 10:31 AM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • That is disturbing.

    Answer by mancosmomma at 11:07 AM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • I agree mancosmomma. Very disturbing indeed.


    Answer by QuinnMae at 11:14 AM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • Ohhhhh This is why we want our health information out there for everyone to see. :P There are always people out there looking to dig into our business for whatever reason. You think we would be able to protect our information a little better. Seems we are hearing so and so broke through government or major business systems several times a year now.

    Answer by itsmesteph11 at 11:33 AM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • errrr yes very disturbing.

    Answer by tnmomofive at 12:15 PM on Jul. 8, 2009


    Answer by AprilDJC at 2:20 PM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • The powerful attack that overwhelmed computers at U.S. and South Korean government agencies for days was even broader than initially realized, also targeting the White House, the Pentagon and the New York Stock Exchange.

    Other targets of the attack included the National Security Agency, Homeland Security Department, State Department, the Nasdaq stock market and The Washington Post, according to an early analysis of the malicious software used in the attacks. Many of the organizations appeared to successfully blunt the sustained computer assaults.


    Answer by AprilDJC at 2:21 PM on Jul. 8, 2009

  • My husband explained to me that it was strictly a usage attack. They had a virus that directed people immediately to those sites in order to overwhelm the servers. The only thing it did kill were the email networks, and home page sites, but the major functioning networks remained live.

    Answer by Anonymous at 3:41 PM on Jul. 8, 2009