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19 October 2012, 12:28

GitHub and HSBC hit by DDoS attacks

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GitHub logo The web site for the popular GitHub project hosting service was taken down temporarily yesterday, 18 October, following a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, which the company acknowledged in a post on its official Twitter account. GitHub, the code sharing site based around Linus Torvald's distributed version control system git, first started experiencing issues at 9:05 PM BST, which resulted in connectivity problems for users attempting to access the site.

The major interruption led the service's administrators to temporarily disable service on port 80 just over 30 minutes later, taking the GitHub site offline; the HTTPS, GIT and SSH services were reportedly unaffected by the disruption. According to the GitHub System Status page, the company is "investigating additional mitigation strategies to harden ourselves against future attacks, similar or otherwise."

HSBC logo GitHub wasn't the only organisation to be targeted by a DDoS attack yesterday: some of the web portals belonging to UK bank HSBC, including its First Direct division, were also taken down. In a statement, HSBC says that, while the interruption did prevent access to its online services including internet banking, the attack on its sites did not affect any customer data. All of the affected sites are now said to be "back up and running".

Update: A day after the original attack, the GitHub Pages service was hit by another denial-of-service attack, which caused problems accessing the service for approximately two hours.


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