Free WordPress Security Mini Course

WikiLeaks Hit With 2 Cyber-Attacks

Are you really surprised? I mean seriously… the WikiLeaks hackers have probably made enemies with some of the most powerful people and corporations in the world. Back in the day of the Wild West cowboys, their faces would be plastered on every Wanted poster in the West.

Apparently since Sunday, the WikiLeaks site has suffered 2 computer assaults, each of which has overwhelmed its servers and rendered the site temporarily inaccessible. This type of attack is known as a DDoS assault.

Immediately rumors started circulating that the US Government might be involved. The rumors sound logical since WikiLeaks recently released 250,000 diplomatic cables and more than embarrassed the Government. But experts say that a more likely culprit is a “patriotic” hacker upset by WikiLeaks’ publication of massive amounts of classified government material.

“You have ethical hackers who are really opposed to the notion that you should be the one to decide what information should be disseminated,” said Mark D. Rasch, a former federal cyber-crime prosecutor and now a security consultant.

Wait, stop right there…

Did he just say that there are hacking “ethics”? Doesn’t that seem like an oxymoron? How can these slimeballs that break websites, deface homepages, and agonize website owners have anything remotely close to “ethics”?

As a matter of fact, there are “good guy hackers” in the world. These guys are often hired by companies to purposely attempt to break their website and systems as a preventative measure. Basically they want to find any security holes before the bad guys do.

Then there are very skilled hackers that actually have a conscience. Maybe the feel bad for their online crimes and want to help contribute to society. Maybe they are patriotic fanatics (as Mr. Rasch suggested). Or maybe they just get the thrill of hurting other bad guys. But I don’t know that I believe those hackers are actually “good guys.”

We could argue for hours about the pros and cons of hacking, but in the context of our mission here at Stop WordPress Hackers, we don’t like hackers. Our customers find our site usually because somebody broke their site and now they need to fix their site.

Interestingly enough, there is actually a such thing as a hackers code of ethics or guidelines or basic hacker philosophy. See Wikipedia‘s page on an original hacker’s code of ethics. But pirates also had a code of ethics and that doesn’t necessarily make them good either right?

Hackers have a sort of secret pact that if you deface, harm, or hack a website, you should always leave open the same holes you accessed the site through. You don’t hack a site and close it up. In fact, it’s these secret back doors that often get website owners in trouble. They get hacked, try to fix the hack, and they think they have fixed the hack when all they have done is cleaned up the mess but left the back door wide open.

If your site was hacked, make sure you fix the mess and protect your site from it happening again. It’s frustrating to clean up a mess once. It’s even more frustrating to clean up that same mess another time soon after.

Leave a Reply