The so-called “front page of the internet” was down Friday morning (April 19) as Reddit suffered outages thanks to a malicious DDoS attack. DDoS, short for distributed denial of service, involves hackers using multiple virus-infected systems to attack a single system — in this case, the website Reddit.
Early in the morning, the Reddit landing page reflected the site was in a “read-only” status, while the DDoS was addressed. Users were unable to publish links to the content sharing site, which has made news in recent days for its Redditors’ attempts to root out suspects from the Boston Marathon bombing. Other sites criticized Reddit users’ “amateur sleuthing” for pointing fingers at innocent people.
The latest update from Reddit’s Twitter account reads, “We’ve mitigated part of the DDoS at this time. However, certain site functions are disabled.” An earlier series of tweets, excerpted below, indicated the site believed they had recovered from the DDoS attack, only to find the attacks continued:
6:30 a.m.“Site availability continues to be impacted by a malicious DDoS attack.”6:12 a.m.“We’ve recovered from the DDoS, at this time.”5:25 a.m.“We are still working on mitigating a malicious DDoS attack. Please stay tuned.”
The hacker group Anonymous, who has not claimed responsibility for the DDoS — not that it’s their style, anyway — tweeted “@Reddit #FAIL.”
The outages at Reddit were initially believed to be related to traffic overload after a user began posting live updates from a Massachusetts police scanner amid a flurry of activity that ended in a takedown of one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects — the now deceased Tamerlan Tsarnaev. The takedown began what is now a manhunt for his brother and fellow suspect, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
The police scanner updates thread is still in read-only mode at the time of this posting.