The DDoS wars continue largely unabated as the hacker social network site 4chan was knocked offline for a period of time on Tuesday.
According to the 4CHAN STATUS webpage, the purpose of which is to "be used to communicate with the 4chan userbase should the main site be unreachable," the main 4chan site was offline for a period on Tuesday, and reports from NetCraft indicate that the attacks have continued into Wednesday:
The origin of the attacks have not been determined, and no one has stepped forward yet to claim responsibility.
One likely candidate for the attacks is rival hacker social network Tumblr who hit 4chan with a preemptive DDoS attack in mid-November after rumors circulated that 4chan members were planning an attack of their own against the Tumblr site.
It is also possible the attacks are in retaliation for 4chan member participation in the spate of DDoS attacks by the loosely organized pro-WikiLeaks and pro-piracy "non-group" called Anonymous.
Anonymous claimed responsibility for DDoS attacks on Visa, MasterCard, PayPal and others through the month of December, and most recently launched a largely failed attempt to knock the Bank of America site offline.
Sources intimate with the details of the Bank of America attack told Infosec Island that the attack on Bank of America was quite disorganized, and lacked sufficient participation in the "hive" to take the site offline for more than a few minutes:
The hive is not very strong so the total volume is relatively small, not really impacting anything at the moment, it’s more just an annoyance... The attack was largely ineffective because the IRC channel used for the command and control of the LOIC tool was not functioning properly.
Without the organized command and control structure (what is called the “hive-mind”), manual attacks are cumbersome... Monitoring Anonymous communications on IRC channels revealed that there was much disarray and overall the effort appeared to be very disorganized.
DDoS attacks by anonymous began to fizzle in the second week of December after a report surfaced that showed the Low Orbit Ion Cannon (LOIC) tool used made it possible for authorities to identify participants, and may have led to several arrests.
It appears the anonymous aspect of the DDoS attacks is what boosts the bravado of the otherwise timid script-kiddies that largely populate 4chan and Anonymous.