Online Blackmail Gang running DDOS attacks

Online Blackmail Gang running DDOS attacks




About 2 years ago, anti-virus and security company Sophos published a report that an online Russian blackmail gang was jailed for extorting $4 million from gambling websites. I thought this was old news until someone told me they’ve been a target of a DDOS attack only recently.

The new Philippine-based company was running an online gambling site when a Russian hacker contacted them and told them to pay him $1,000 per day as protection money. In return, their website will not be attacked and shut down. The owners rejected the “protection offer“.

Within a week of that initial contact, the website was hammered with a DDOS attack. The engineers at the Makati Data Center hosting the site were quick to deploy preventive measures to block the DDOS which lasted for days in intervals or 15 to 20 minutes between attacks.


 

The attackers gave up after a week.

I think this is not the first or only incident that happened locally. The problem is that the attacks are coming outside of the Philippines.

On the other hand, Ivan Maksakov, Alexander Petrov, and Denis Stepanov were each sentenced to 8 years in prison and a $3,700 fine {source}. It looks like some of their team-mates are still out there.



Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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20 Responses

  1. Andre says:

    Geez if its works offline do it online :)

  2. BrianB says:

    Is this ifafa, abe? Preventive measures as in what?

  3. yuga says:

    @BrianB – could be some kick-ass Cisco hardware (something like a Cisco ASA 5500 Series).

  4. Roger D says:

    There are available mitigation techniques for DDOS, it could be manual through combination of BGP routing and network appliance or through outsource service like prolexic.

  5. yuga says:

    I got only software-based on my dedicated servers – BFD, anti-DOS and APF.

  6. junior says:

    first time to hear this story thank for this post abe…

  7. Roger D says:

    Yuga, your solution is host based, while service providers need network based solution that can span across different network access providers. You don’t want your server in their sinkhole list ;)

  8. yuga says:

    @roger – thank God I’ve never been a target of a DDOS attack in the last 5 years in the hosting business.

  9. Alex says:

    @yuga good for you my servers have been
    ddos’d twice since 2006. i remember my server admins had to do some control damage by changing server ip blocks often. it lasted for about a week which costed me $2k. :(

  10. Andre Marcelo-Tanner says:

    firewalls usually work for DOS’s
    but for Distributed DOS attacks (DDOS) you need special stuff, there are expensive appliances you can buy, or you can have teams who do it for you if you host with Rackspace (Preventier) or ThePlanet has one also, but Rackspace is more heavily supported. IMO even if you have an appliance you need the expertees and round the clock technicians or teams of them to mitigate attacks because it cant all be automatic. Its a must for mission critical sites, especially ECommerce sites.

  11. The story sounds familiar, is the Data Center located in RCBC Plaza?

    Gambling sites are always the hardest hit of blackmail DDOS. They have huge sums of money.

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  18. john goose says:

    Very nice information. Thanks for this.

  19. maj says:

    Hi yuga, I am really confused with all these things. apparently, I am still unable to access Facebook, Yahoo, Google Blogger, and Friendster. Does this mean that my computer was ruined by the DOS attack that has been happening? and would I ever still access those sites? I really cannot understand these DOS thing and how it can impact on the computer of users like me. How can I resolve this issue? I would really appreciate if you guys can help me clarify this things and figure out what to do with my computer. I can’t do anything now because I cannot access almost every social networking site. Please please help me. thank you so much and all the best!

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