Half the internet is down today: Here’s (probably) why
Internet users around the world, but mostly in the United States, reported that top websites are not loading on Friday morning.
The affected sites include Amazon, Twitter, Etsy, Github, Spotify, and others.
The situation is developing, but it appears to have something to do with DNS hosts.
Domain Name Servers (DNS) are a core part of the internet’s backbone. They translate what you type into your browser – www.businessinsider.com, for example – into IP addresses that computers can understand.
And as it happens, DYN, a major DNS host, is suffering a DDoS attack. DDoS attacks basically mean that hackers are overwhelming their servers with useless data and repeated load requests, which means that useful data – the Twitter IP address – can’t get through.
Many sites and services use DynDNS as their upstream DNS provider, including Github, Twitter, SaneBox, Reddit, AirBnB, and Heroku. All of these are reportedly experiencing outages and downtime, either partially or totally.
According to Hacker News and reports, these sites have been affected:
It’s not immediately obvious who is behind this DDoS attack. However, the fact that the attackers were able to disrupt the DNS provider used by some of the most popular websites tells a lot about their abilities.
At the moment, Dyn DNS is still dealing with the attack and its cause remains unknown. Stay tuned for further updates.
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