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Cyberattacks shut down Estonia

I’ve been following this fascinating story for a few weeks now. It started when Estonian authorities began removing a bronze statue of a World War II-era Soviet soldier from a park in Tallinn, Estonia. The removal sparked violent protests from Estonians of Russian descent as was to be expected. What was unexpected was what the NY Times — in the article entitled, “Digital Fears Emerge After Data Siege in Estonia” — and others have called the “first war in cyberspace.” The country was beseiged by a flood of distributed denial-of-service attacks on the country’s digital infrastructure, “clogging the Web sites of the president, the prime minister, Parliament and other government agencies, staggering Estonia’s biggest bank and overwhelming the sites of several daily newspapers.” The cyber-attacks went on for several weeks.

The story was also slashdotted.

The 10 largest assaults blasted streams of 90 megabits of data a second at Estonia’s networks, lasting up to 10 hours each. That is a data load equivalent to downloading the entire Windows XP operating system every six seconds for 10 hours.

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