Twitter Outage: What Happened

failwhale.jpgOkay, the Twitter outage yesterday wasn’t the end of the world. But it did put a crimp in our usual routine and made gathering breaking news and information that much more challenging for a good part of the day.

Yesterday, Twitter said its technical difficulties were a result of a denial of service attack, but what kind of person or group can launch such an attack and why would they do it? And can it happen again?

Our colleagues at WebNewser have a full report on the attacks that slowed down Twitter, as well as Facebook, LiveJournal and Google’s Blogger site. The attack seems to have been targeting a blogger from the Eastern European nation of Georgia, which is currently in the midst of a war with Russia, Facebook’s chief security officer Max Kelly told CNET News.

According to Kelly:

It was a simultaneous attack across a number of properties targeting him to keep his voice from being heard. We’re actively investigating the source of the attacks, and we hope to be able to find out the individuals involved in the back end and to take action against them, if we can.

You have to ask who would benefit the most from doing this and think about what those people are doing and the disregard for the rest of the users and the Internet.

The people who are coordinating this attack, the criminals, are definitely determined and using a lot of resources. If they’re asking our infrastructure to generate hundreds of pages a second, that’s a lot of pages our users can’t see.

It’s unclear whether yesterday’s attacks are related to DDoS attacks that brought down Gawker earlier this week.

Earlier: Twitter’s Down, Denial Of Service Attack Strikes Again