[ISN] DDoS attack on DNS hits Amazon and others briefly

From: InfoSec News <alerts_at_private>
Date: Tue, 29 Dec 2009 04:35:19 -0600 (CST)

By Peter Sayer
IDG News Service
December 24, 2009

Internet users in Northern California were unable to reach properties 
including Amazon.com and Amazon Web Services for a time Wednesday 
evening, as their DNS provider was targeted by a distributed 
denial-of-service attack. The attack came as North American consumers 
rushed to finish online shopping ahead of the end-of-year holiday 

Amazon Web Services (AWS) was the first to signal something was amiss. 
Its status page indicates that at 5:43 p.m. PT on Wednesday its staff 
was investigating reports of DNS (Domain Name System) resolution errors 
from customers trying to reach its S3 cloud storage service. The problem 
persisted until 6:38 p.m. PT, but in the meantime the S3 service 
continued to operate, AWS said.

However, staff at Neustar, the owner of Amazon's DNS provider UltraDNS, 
was aware of the problem around an hour earlier, at 4:45 p.m. PT.

"At 7:45 p.m. ET we noticed an abnormal spike in queries and immediately 
identified it as a DDoS attack," said Allen Goldberg, vice president of 
corporate communications at Neustar, in an e-mail.

The company was able to analyze the attack pattern and take steps to 
limit its effects within minutes of identifying the problem, he said.


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Received on Tue Dec 29 2009 - 02:35:19 PST

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