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Why Anonymous Can't Take Down Amazon.com

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the can't-imagine dept.

Networking 392

suraj.sun writes "The website-attacking group 'Anonymous' tried and failed to take down Amazon.com on Thursday. The group's vengeance horde quickly found out something techies have known for years: Amazon, which has built one of the world's most invincible websites, is almost impossible to crash.... Anonymous quickly figured that out. Less than an hour after setting its sights on Amazon, the group's organizers called off the attempt. 'We don't have enough forces,' they tweeted."

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FFS (4, Insightful)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550680)

Well done anonymous, you've just handed Amazon their marketing for their hosting services for the considerable future.

And even if you haven't, there's still a ton of suited fatcats chortling merrily about the concomitant stock price rise as they stuff their faces with expensive food and drink this holiday season.

Y'all better step it up, or this might be your Waterloo.

Re:FFS (2)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550716)

Yeah, seriously. If there's ever been a case for the "haha" tag, this is it.

Re:FFS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550794)

Yeah, that's cool. Kind of like their being a tussle between China and Google. China didn't know what they were dealing with.

Re:FFS (5, Funny)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550720)

Wasn't Waterloo exactly like this, except for the fact it was completely different?

Re:FFS (4, Funny)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550770)

Yeah, a lot more harmonies and synthesizers, as well as a danceable beat.

Re:FFS (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550778)

I thought Waterloo was a water-based amusement park frequented Napoleon Bonaparte and his most excellent friends.

Re:FFS (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551018)

I think the OP is referring to the Waterloo, a model of car introduced in Uzvekia in 1915, named to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Napolean's defeat. Owned by the ruling class, it was made famous after a bloody 1916 factory riot in which the teeming mass of pre-Soviet strikers tried to push it back - to keep its driver from entering the factory, you understand. However, its powerful engine overcame them and drove on regardless. An apt analogy, IMHO.

Re:FFS (2)

JustOK (667959) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551140)

you're thinking of the flush toliet

Re:FFS (1)

SpaghettiPattern (609814) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551160)

I remember Waterloo. Saucy Ikea chicks. Thanks for bringing that up. Forgot the topic completely now. Well, better switch to wanking then he?

Re:FFS (1)

MarkvW (1037596) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551228)

What does ABBA have to do with this?

Re:FFS (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551246)

Wasn't Waterloo exactly like this, except for the fact it was completely different?

Not at all. At Waterloo, Napoleon did surrender- and Anonymous have met their destiny in quite a similar way.

Re:FFS (5, Insightful)

tuffy (10202) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550860)

Have these guys ever disrupted any company significantly? TFA mentions they've taken down the RIAA, MPAA and Mastercard front pages, but none of those have affected their core businesses. It seems like in order to have a Waterloo, they would first need to have some real accomplishments beforehand.

Re:FFS (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550930)

they would first need to have some real accomplishments beforehand.

In this day and age, it's all about column inches, innit?

Re:FFS (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551296)

it's all about column inches, innit?

That's what she said

Re:FFS (3, Insightful)

HungryHobo (1314109) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551068)

It got the issue on the front pages again, it got lots of attention and they drew enough attention to mastercard that icelandic regulators are dragging them over the coals as to exactly why they cut off an icelandic company.

in many ways the "hacktivism"(I know, I shudder when I use the word too) actually seems to have achieved at least as much as most regular protests.

Trying to DDoS amazon though was always going to be like pissing at a thunder storm, you can't saturate pipes that thick with a few bored teenagers.

Re:FFS (1)

AltairDusk (1757788) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551390)

Trying to DDoS amazon though was always going to be like pissing at a thunder storm

Anyone unlucky enough to be struck by lightning while attempting that would either be dead or wish they were dead...

Re:FFS (2)

unity100 (970058) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551152)

they have been wreaking havoc with paypal, which pressurized paypal to come around and spill the beans saying they shut wikileaks down due to political pressure. and then they released their funds.

Re:FFS (1)

diegocg (1680514) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551230)

I've been told that the DDOS to Mastercard affected for a while to their 3d-secure authentication servers, ie, it stopped mastercard from being able to do online transactions, which is certainly part of their core bussiness.

Re:FFS (3, Interesting)

tuffy (10202) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551324)

Is there a source for this? According to the article,

"Mastercard and Visa's transaction networks -- which run completely independently of their websites -- were unaffected."

Re:FFS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551442)

Their stupid DDoS on Visa caused both me and a coworkers bank cards to bounce charges while out last wednesday(the day after pay day so we were both flush w/ cash), in two different locations at 2 different times of day.

Re:FFS (4, Insightful)

morgauxo (974071) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550902)

That's true. A much better strategy would be to single out Amazon's customers and target them one at a time as they probably don't have as much server resources allocated to them.

Re:FFS (1)

Dan East (318230) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550966)

Too bad I spent all my mod points just now.

Regardless, the resources marshaled by Anonymous and other botnet operators reside at the farthest, smallest nodes of the internet, while the beefy commercial entities like Google and Amazon are cozied right up to the trunks and branches at the most strategic distributed locations. Due to that simple fact alone it would require a disproportionately greater amount of resources to take down one of these mammoth operations.

Re:FFS (4, Insightful)

ChaosDiscord (4913) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550982)

I can see the slogan. "Amazon.com EC2: Rock solid stability. Provided Joe Lieberman likes you."

Re:FFS (1)

Superken7 (893292) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551184)

Does it really matter if amazon.com goes down? Resources cost money, and if they succeeded in wasting a significant part of them (putting extra load on their servers) even if amazon stayed online... it might have been partially "successful".

Re:FFS (2)

frostfreek (647009) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551368)

Amazon is making money on the order of a $1M per minute at the peak. Amazon rents out Quadruple Extra Large cluster computer servers for $1.60 per hour. The cost of resources is insignificant compared to the sales. I would love to see what, if any, disturbance was actually made on the Amazon's servers. Negligible? Barely noticeable? Significant?

Re:FFS (2)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551384)

You mean their Austerlitz. Amazon is a battle lost, when a larger war is won (all the other sites they took down).

Now everyone notices that freedom of information on the Internet is something popular enough that spontaneous unpredictable forces can be marshalled against you if you oppose the concept of freedom of information. So it figures in decision making when it comes to siding with bullshit authoritarian and corporate pronouncements about certain information being "verboten" for public consumption.

Yes, Amazon is a target they should have never tried to face. Amazon's principal means of business is an Internet storefront. Therefore, their defenses are formidable. While Mastercard or the Swiss Post Office's Bank, with dinky shingles on the web, are easy targets. But these entities' principal means of business is not through a .com address, therefore, it makes no sense to turn their websites into bulwarks. And this remains true. Sure, their fortify their defenses, but they don't have the resources or inclination to develop really effective defenses against a DDoS. It's too expensive.

Yes, Anonymous can't take down Amazon, and it was silly to try. That observation applies to 1% of websites. The other 99% are vulnerable, and remain vulnerable to a DDoS attack. And the majority of websites therefor will remain the kind of targets that an an Anonymous phenomenon can take out again, any time they want to, as long as you don't piss them off by trying to control the free flow of information on the Internet, a cause I agree with, and any right thinking person should.

Nah (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550752)

Amazon just paid them off. All their Christmas shopping will be arriving soon. It's amazing how a piece of equipment in a certain area supporting can fail, isn't it?. Capice?

Its only because... (4, Funny)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550766)

They used the wrong tactic. The only thing that will bring down a beast like Amazon is a hardware malfunction

http://news.slashdot.org/story/10/12/13/1333223/Amazon-Says-Hardware-Not-Hackers-Caused-Outage

They should be tossing hamsters or other small rodents into their server rooms. That'll show em.

Re:Its only because... (5, Funny)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550798)

They should be tossing hamsters or other small rodents into their server rooms. That'll show em.

Sure, but it's awfully hard to do that from your mom's basement.

Re:Its only because... (1)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550840)

I guess the postage system is too slow around Xmas time in order to properly send them by post...

Curses, will have to think up a better plan.

Re:Its only because... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550978)

I guess the postage system is too slow around Xmas time in order to properly send them by post...

Curses, will have to think up a better plan.

Do Amazon's servers support Hamster Transfer Protocol? Or TCP/IP over Rodent Carriers?

Re:Its only because... (1)

Higaran (835598) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551358)

They'll probably be there in time if they buy them stright from Amazon.

Re:Its only because... (0)

Gunkerty Jeb (1950964) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550862)

Sure, but it's awfully hard to do that from your mom's basement.

Zing!

Re:Its only because... (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551398)

Not if the pipes are fat enough. Put a hamster in one end and blow. You do know how to blow, don't you? Just put your lips together... But given the story about Comcast and congestion, you might want to do it at 1AM or so.

I was going to say you could order the hamsters from Amazon and have them deliver to themselves, but I don't see that they sell real hamsters. Would a Zhu Zhu pet hamster do any significant damage?

What's most interesting is that a search on Amazon for "hamsters for sale" returns "Zentrex-3 Diet Pills" as the fourth item on the list. I have no idea what the connection between hamsters and Zentrex-3 is.

Re:Its only because... (5, Funny)

SethThresher (1958152) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550866)

Instead of new server rack, package contained bobcats. Would not buy again.

Re:Its only because... (1)

Entropius (188861) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551440)

tbh I'd rather have the bobcat. Lots of things you can do with a bobcat.

Re:Its only because... (1)

ziggyzaggy (552814) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551158)

have they tried a good slashdotting yet? they could just post a link here to a page with lots of middleware links and claim it's link to home porn of some modest movie star

Re:Its only because... (2)

JockTroll (996521) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551206)

No animal cruelty will be tolerated. ANFO is your friend.

Hackers? Website-attackers (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550786)

Looks like they've been officially downgraded from "hackers" to "website-attackers". Too bad.

Re:Hackers? Website-attackers (1)

Amorymeltzer (1213818) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550832)

That's what happens when the story is from the section dealing with money and finance, hence the signoff - So click away, holiday shoppers. Amazon's got your back.

Re:Hackers? Website-attackers (1)

Mostly Harmless (48610) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550842)

How long until people get it right: pre-pubescent script kiddies?

Re:Hackers? Website-attackers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550844)

Hold on just one minute! You are spreading misinformation. You yourself are anonymous! It says it right there in your user name. You don't really expect me to fall for your double bluff, do you?!?

They could if they really really wanted (1)

JumperCable (673155) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550796)

But the collateral damage would be too high and piss off far too many other people. Plus it they would have to use a different tool.

No, they couldn't. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550856)

But the collateral damage would be too high and piss off far too many other people. Plus it they would have to use a different tool.

Pfffffftttt. No they couldn't. Anonymous are a bunch of vigilante dorks with delusions of grandeur. They had no chance.

Next up, law enforcement will now start catching the kids and scaring the shit out of them while their mommies and daddies cough up their kid's college funds to keep them out of jail.

Morons.

Re:No, they couldn't. (1)

rtfa-troll (1340807) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551236)

Next up, law enforcement will now start catching the kids and scaring the shit out of them while their mommies and daddies cough up their kid's college funds to keep them out of jail.

Too many people subscribing to college is a definite problem in the current environment. An inability to spoof IP packets or log into your neighbor's WiFi on a false address when planning to break the law seems to me like a perfect disqualification for a philosophy degree let alone anything technical. Let the natural selection begin. Especially because most of this is probably a false flag attack anyway. I guess the US Cyber Command just over-estimated how much Anonymous would be able to help them in their budget negotiation...

Re:They could if they really really wanted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550940)

Oh I don't think Anonymous is at all lacking in the tool department.

Re:They could if they really really wanted (1)

Java Pimp (98454) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550942)

But the collateral damage would be too high and piss off far too many other people.

Yeah that's it they're concerned about collateral damage... damned morals will get you every time!

Plus it they would have to use a different tool.

It's called a bunker buster...

Re:They could if they really really wanted (1)

JumperCable (673155) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551134)

Yeah that's it they're concerned about collateral damage... damned morals will get you every time!

The masses don't have to have morals. Just the individuals in that mass who have the knowledge need to have enough intelligence to know that it might not be such a good idea.

DDoS is not exactly sophisticated (4, Interesting)

KublaiKhan (522918) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550800)

Considering the volume of traffic that Amazon is designed to handle normally, it's no real surprise that an 'attack' that amounts to a slight bump in traffic for them would barely be noticed.

Further, unlike Gawker-clan, Amazon is likely to have actual IT people working on securing their servers from just such events.

They are a -much- harder target than most places.

That being said, they are far from invincible. There's always a way in, and if Anonymous and allied entities really worked on it for a long time, they would likely find a way to at least deface the site.

That would be rather beyond the usual level of patience that Anonymous exhibits, though.

A more effective (and more 'lulzy'--hence, more interesting for Anonymous) way of 'poisoning' Amazon would be to leverage the review process, injecting more noise than signal, and thus crippling one of the key selling points that Amazon has as a purchasing platform.

Other effective methods might be to 'punish' Amazon-affiliated sellers' websites, interfering with their ability to do business based on their association with Amazon. This might be insufficiently visible, though, unless they did so in a manner which caused many of them to complain to news organizations.

DDoSing Amazon itself is, and has been for years, a waste of time--there's nothing that an entity like Anonymous can do to it with LOIC that they don't get on Black Friday anyway.

Re:DDoS is not exactly sophisticated (1)

trollertron3000 (1940942) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550990)

Amazon's architect's are some of the best in the world. They've basically reinvented data centers going beyond just hot and cold isles to custom racks with custom cooling solutions, etc. Here is a much more in-depth talk from James Hamilton on Amazon's S3/EC2 setup and their focus on adding up all the small improvements: Datacenter Infrastructure Innovation [youtube.com] These are the same folks that basically invented the "cloud" so they could sell the CPU power for their servers that sit idle most of the year and only spool up for Christmas time. So yeah, they got some serious muscle.

Noise Filter (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551402)

way of 'poisoning' Amazon would be to leverage the review process

Almost impossible, since comments are meta-moderated so junk would go to the bottom, and an automated comment poster would be easily detected and blocked.

As for punishing the affiliates, that's probably even harder than Amazon itself since there are so many...

I was thinking the same thing about Black Friday, Amazon did go a bit slow at times then. That was probably an exiting day for IT.

This is (1)

enormouspenis (741718) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550810)

just like WikiLeaks stopped the war. Decisive hard hitting overwhelming action without regard for consequences.

This was expected (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550816)

Amazon is one of the biggest (if not the biggest) shops on the internet. They need to stand up while taking a hammering every Xmas. If anyone is going to have a superior infrastructure it will be Amazon.

Re:This was expected (1)

powerlord (28156) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550924)

Amazon is one of the biggest (if not the biggest) shops on the internet. They need to stand up while taking a hammering every Xmas. If anyone is going to have a superior infrastructure it will be Amazon.

I agree, however if they (or anyone else) is ever going to try this is the time.

If their servers are already under high volume load, then you're already half-way there.

(not that I expected them, or anyone else to be able to take down Amazon)

Re:This was expected (1)

sholsinger (1131365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551048)

Cyber Monday would have been better.

EC2 Elastic Load Balancing (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550830)

EC2 Standard On-Demand Instances Pricing
Linux/UNIX Usage Small (Default) $0.095 per hour Windows Usage $0.13 per hour
Features of Elastic Load Balancing
Using Elastic Load Balancing, you can distribute incoming traffic across your Amazon EC2 instances in a single Availability Zone or multiple Availability Zones. Elastic Load Balancing automatically scales its request handling capacity in response to incoming application traffic.
Elastic Load Balancing can detect the health of Amazon EC2 instances. When it detects unhealthy load-balanced Amazon EC2 instances, it no longer routes traffic to those Amazon EC2 instances instead spreading the load across the remaining healthy Amazon EC2 instances.
Elastic Load Balancing supports the ability to stick user sessions to specific EC2 instances.
Elastic Load Balancing supports SSL termination at the Load Balancer, including offloading SSL decryption from application instances and providing centralized management of SSL certificates.
Elastic Load Balancing metrics such as request count and request latency are reported by Amazon CloudWatch.

Linux instances are much, much cheaper.

Re:EC2 Elastic Load Balancing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550900)

Linux instances are much, much cheaper.

I'm not sure I'd consider 9.5 cents per hour vs 13 cents per hour 'much, much cheaper'.

Re:EC2 Elastic Load Balancing (1, Informative)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550968)

That's because you're not thinking to scale. That's $83K/year PER instance.

Re:EC2 Elastic Load Balancing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551146)

$0.095/hr, not $9.5/hr

Re:EC2 Elastic Load Balancing (3, Informative)

fusiongyro (55524) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551214)

How do you get $83K? 0.095 * 24 * 365 = $832.20/year. 0.13 * 24 * 365 = $1,138.80/year. The difference is $306.60/year. It's too much for hosting either way, but we're talking about a ~36% Microsoft tax, which isn't far from the ordinary.

Re:EC2 Elastic Load Balancing (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551002)

Yeah, you're right. The second 'much' was too much too much.

Re:EC2 Elastic Load Balancing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551004)

0.13 > 0.095

Re:EC2 Elastic Load Balancing (1)

sholsinger (1131365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551092)

So you're saying that Anonymous should have taken them down from the inside using EC2 to "unbalance" all of it's instances?

"impossible" (4, Insightful)

aBaldrich (1692238) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550848)

In the black hat jargon impossible means that nobody has done it yet.

They were hoping for the ultimate Amazon punishmen (5, Funny)

Megahard (1053072) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550850)

Death by snu-snu

Why Doesnt Google Offer Cloud Services Beyond (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550880)

their Google "This" or Google "That"?

Yours In Novosibirsk,
Kilgore Trout, C.I.O.

misguided attack (4, Interesting)

retech (1228598) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550906)

Dear ANON;

Why not try a simple well organized boycott? I know, it sounds grossly old fashioned and just too far beneath your considerable talent, skill and angst. But, as you have found, these companies are actually trying to stay in business because they enjoy their revenue stream. If you could, say, interrupt that revenue you could get some attention. And it wouldn't be all negative attention. No one likes a screaming child, but they are soon forgot. A well mannered articulate child is remembered forever. The longer you can interrupt their revenue the more they're going to want to discuss this quibble. So... perhaps you may wish to think about a worldwide boycott? Try it for a day. If it's moderately successful, try it out for a week. Shut down Amazon, VISA and MC's money for a month and the entire globe will listen.

Re:misguided attack (2)

KublaiKhan (522918) | more than 3 years ago | (#34550980)

I rather doubt that Amazon would notice the blip in sales. There might be, to be generous, a few million Anonymous, of which only a fraction would normally be buying from Amazon on any particular day; Amazon does on the order of $50 million in sales daily.

Any such action--unless coordinated with numerous other "legit" groups--would be lost in the noise.

Re:misguided attack (2)

Korin43 (881732) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551232)

There might be, to be generous, a few thousand Anonymous

Fixed that for you.

Re:misguided attack (1)

JumperCable (673155) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551076)

Successful boycotts are incredibly difficult to pull off. You need to have a large mass of highly dedicated, might motivated well organized people to do it. Since Anonymous is highly decentralized, I don't think they would have the chops to do it. VISA & Mastercard pretty much control the international credit card market. Some areas just do not have alternatives. You can't ask people to give up, what they don't control.

A well mannered articulate child is remembered forever.

Not really. The internet is full of intelligent & articulate people that few people ever bother listening to. You need to PR and some splash to even be seen. By all means, you are right that there should be a better way. The problem is coming up with one.

Re:misguided attack (1)

arachnoprobe (945081) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551346)

There ARE successfull boycotts in history, for example the boycott of south african products by european customers. Brought down a whole Government.

Re:misguided attack (1)

gilbert644 (1515625) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551200)

That would mean doing something meaningful that will inconvenience them. People were calling for a boycott of paypal and the response most of the time was either 'I never really use paypal but I sure will boycott them now!' or 'This sucks, but I use them too much, sorry' I doubt these companies will feel any pain.

Re:misguided attack (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551242)

You think that these supposedly savvy people would do something other than Mook Chivalry and attack while waiting in line ( however short these lines may be ) until their turn ). Haven't they learned anything from rpgs?

It'd make more sense to split up and go after strategic targets rather than trying to jam up the front gates.

Re:misguided attack (2)

nospam007 (722110) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551290)

"Why not try a simple well organized boycott?"

Asking non reading people not to buy a book?

As I said before, buy stuff, unpack it and return it the next day, that actually hurts if millions of people would do it.

Re:misguided attack (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551352)

Amazon sells more than just books.

For instance, I tend to buy video games rather than books from them.

Possibly because they keep throwing $20 gift certificates at me if I pre-order certain ($50-60) games.

Re:misguided attack (1)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551356)

It would seem to me that it's a bit counter-intuitive for a group who wishes to remain anonymous to give their information to these companies to let them know they're no longer willing to business because of their business practices.

Furthermore, I'd be willing to bet a good portion of anonymous is under the age of 18, and unable to have a Visa or MC, making "protest" rather irrelevant.

Re:misguided attack (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551388)

Please. If these people had a lot of money, and did a lot of shopping, they probably wouldn't be huddled over a computer in their parents basement plotting DOS attacks over IRC.

Because they'd need money (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551418)

Seem like a large number of anon are younger kids and the "basement dweller" types. They are not really the sorts who spend a lot of money and thus not the sort who matter much in terms of a boycott. I doubt they'd be noticed. In terms of organizing larger groups, good luck with that. For that you need respect which is something they sorely lack. The people who inhabit /b/ are not the sorts that most people are going to be going to for advice.

Re:misguided attack (1)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551426)

4chan's "Slacktivism" efforts don't really cost the participants any money. A boycott might, as some dude in Iowa is forced to set up an account at Barnes and Noble to buy his comic books.

"Anonymous" failed to take down Amazon.com (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34550914)

But the billions of suggestions are priceless. Anonymous wins again!

LOL - you actually believe that (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551036)

Look, in the history of the Internet (and I was on ARPA*NET) there is no such thing as an impregnable web site.

There are many ways - brute force attacks are the easiest for botnets run by scriptkidlings, but reverse engineering attempts inside the structure, provider links thru points of contacts, poisoning DNS entries, the methods are literally in the thousands that could easily be used.

When faced with a heavily defended commercial gate, realize that communication methods exist for suppliers, partners, consumer communication, etc.

Heck, just spam with login capture for valid accounts will get you the ability to poison the customer experience if you target it for stress time running up to Christmas.

There is no such thing as an impregnable commercial website.

Never has been.

Never will be.

Re:LOL - you actually believe that (1)

Bucky24 (1943328) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551100)

There is no such thing as an impregnable commercial website.

I agree. But I also agree with the article that Amazon's site is pretty hard to crack.

Re:LOL - you actually believe that (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551180)

I didn't say it wasn't.

So are some of the military websites.

Re:LOL - you actually believe that (4, Insightful)

swfranklin (578324) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551194)

There is no such thing as an impregnable commercial website.

Never has been.

Never will be.

It doesn't actually have to be "impregnable", it just has to be able to scale larger than the resources their opposition is able to muster. They got that.

Re:all your consumer exp is belong to USA (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551304)

It doesn't actually have to be "impregnable", it just has to be able to scale larger than the resources their opposition is able to muster. They got that.

Um. No.

The perception of safety and reasonable consumer response is what matters, not the reality.

They dont have enough forces ... (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551072)

yet, that is ...

Annonymous is legion... (5, Funny)

Rhacman (1528815) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551080)

...for sufficiently small values of 'legion'.

Wrong weapon (4, Insightful)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551106)

Probably Slashdot stories about Amazon denying hosting to Wikileaks harmed more the company than the combined Anonymous attack. There is no firewall against social attacks.

Re:Wrong weapon (4, Insightful)

onefriedrice (1171917) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551282)

Probably Slashdot stories about Amazon denying hosting to Wikileaks harmed more the company than the combined Anonymous attack. There is no firewall against social attacks.

Except most people probably agree with Amazon's decision. It probably helped them. Surely you have noticed that Slashdot is not very representative of what we might call the "general population," falling somewhere to the left of where most people are, at least in the United States, Amazon's largest market.

Any victory would have been a phyrric one... (3, Insightful)

mseeger (40923) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551108)

Any victory of Anonymous would have been a phyrric one. It would have alienated tons of people they can now still win over. If i try very hard, i can come up with something more stupid than attacking Amazon shortly before Christmas, but it would be quite a challenge. For >50% of all people their christmas presents are more important than the fate of Julian Assange (even if he is shot "trying to escape"). Unluckily they've got a vote too. So converting them from indifference to hostile would neither help Assange nor Wikileaks.

CU, Martin

Re:Any victory would have been a phyrric one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551260)

Pyrrhic. Not phyrric. My spell-checker even knows it.

Re:Any victory would have been a phyrric one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551406)

Really? I think the behavior of Anonymous has already alienated people regardless of how they affected Amazon.

I think WikiLeaks has a right to exist and do what they do, I'm not sure I agree with it and I'm not sure I trust their motives. But they have a right to publish the info they have, plain and simple.

I also think Amazon had every right to cut off WikiLeaks. Businesses have the right to to deny service, especially if what Amazon claims is true and Wikileaks violated their agreement.

All Anonymous has done is drive away reasonable people away. Lets not forget that they've enlisted the help of criminals http://www.darkreading.com/database-security/167901020/security/attacks-breaches/228800076/botnet-operators-set-to-join-operation-payback.html. I'd say Anonymous has done a very good job of making me question who exactly the avid supporters of Wikileaks are, because they look like a pretty shady lot.

All (1)

venril (905197) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551116)

"All you base are belong to..... oh, never mind........" ~Anonymous

Don't forget Akamai (3, Interesting)

GillBates0 (664202) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551186)

Akamai had a role to play in the defense as well.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20025477-281.html [cnet.com]

Akamai says it can defend against Anon attacks

Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20025477-281.html#ixzz187QnPlDV [cnet.com]
Akamai managers say they could have bolstered the Web sites that buckled under attacks launched recently by Internet vigilantes.

The world's largest content delivery network says it has enough servers and the right kind of network to "mitigate distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks," Neil Cohen, Akamai's senior director of product marketing told CNET. DDoS describes the practice of overwhelming a Web site with traffic so that it can't be accessed.

Some well-known sites were the targets of DDoS attacks launched by a loosely connected group of WikiLeaks supporters who call themselves Anonymous or Anon for short. The group lashed out at companies they consider to be hostile to WikiLeaks, the service responsible for publicizing an enormous amount of classified U.S. government documents. Some of those attacked were MasterCard, Visa, PayPal, and Amazon.

MasterCard, Visa, and PayPal stopped processing donations made to WikiLeaks while Amazon stopped hosting WikiLeaks servers. At this point it appears that Amazon was able to withstand the attack while MasterCard and Visa's sites were inaccessible for extended periods.

Cohen said few other companies have as much experience as his with defending Web sites from this kind of threat. He said that late last month, a number of U.S. retail sites came under DDoS attack from multiple different countries. Cohen said he was unaware of who was behind it or why, but he said that Akamai helped some of the retailers withstand the onslaught of hits to their sites, which in some cases reached to 10,000 times the normal daily traffic to some of these sites. None of the sites went down, he said.

"What we did over the last decade was built out our network and we now have 80,000 servers in 70 countries," Cohen said. "We can mitigate DDoS attacks by having a server extremely close to the court rather than try to absorb the attack in one centralized location. As an attack grows in size and distributes out to more bots, we have a server near the compromised machines. As the attack gets bigger, our network scales on demand."

While there are reports that Anonymous is giving up on DDoS attacks related to the WikiLeaks case, it is unlikely that we've seen the end of them. In retaliation against the entertainment industry's antipiracy attempts, Anonymous knocked out the Web sites belonging to the Motion Picture Association of America, the Recording Industry Association of America, Hustler magazine, and the U.S. Copyright Office.

Read more: http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20025477-281.html#ixzz187QiBtJU [cnet.com]

Not going to happen (4, Informative)

Mullen (14656) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551188)

I worked there from 2000 - 2002 and, yes, my Amazon.com knowledge might be a little dated, I can tell you one thing about Amazon.com that was just as true today as it was 10 years ago; they don't mess around when it comes to server capacity and bandwidth.

Their whole online infrastructure is built to handle the busiest hours of the busiest days of online Christmas shopping. Anonymous could never ever get enough people to make a noticeable dent in Amazon.com's ability to take orders.

Re:Not going to happen (1)

Jerrith (6472) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551286)

Funny. I *just* went to the main amazon.com page, and after 30 seconds of waiting, when all the page (text and images) hadn't come up, I gave up and left.

Someone seems to have done something to slow them down.

Re:Not going to happen (1)

kaiser423 (828989) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551446)

I just went myself. Loaded instantly. Probably your connection.

If they really want to make an impact... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34551362)

They should DoS Google instead. That way, nobody will even be able to find Amazon and its ilk.

Why attack Amazon? (2)

Sigma 7 (266129) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551408)

Amazon stated why on their blog [amazon.com] - Wikileaks doesn't technically "own" the data, and Amazon doesn't want to be involved in distributing unauthorized material. Amazon also mentioned that there wasn't much attempt at redaction for purposes of keeping individuals safe (which is debatable). Why attack them when they aren't comfortable hosting the data?

Also, why not extend this to attacking those who aren't willing to host the data themselves? (e.g. harass random users until they setup a mirror, or at least distribute one page of a document.)

From the Dept of Redundancy Dept (1)

drb226 (1938360) | more than 3 years ago | (#34551434)

The website-attacking group 'Anonymous' tried and failed to take down Amazon.com on Thursday. The group's vengeance horde quickly found out something techies have known for years: Amazon, which has built one of the world's most invincible websites, is almost impossible to crash.... Anonymous quickly figured that out.

Good thing they not only found it out, they figured it out.

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