December 23, 2014

Lights Out

North Korean Wingnut-in-Chief Kim Jung-un was unable to update his Facebook page yesterday as the interweb tubes serving his country wilted like week old kimchi left in the sun. From Fox News:
Prominent North Korean websites were back online Tuesday after an hours-long shutdown that led to speculation by some researchers and web watchers that the country's Internet connections could be under cyberattack.

South Korean officials told the Associated Press that Internet access to the North's official Korean Central News Agency and the Rodong Sinmun newspaper were working normally Tuesday after being inaccessible earlier. Those sites are the main channels for official North Korea news, with servers located abroad.

The outage came less than a week after the U.S. vowed an unspecified response to a massive hacking attack against Sony Pictures Entertainment over the release of the comedy film "The Interview." The plot of the comedy centers on the assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, leading to widespread speculation that the country was responsible for the attack. Late last week, the FBI publicly blamed North Korea in the incident, though Pyongyang has denied involvement.

The White House and the State Department on Monday declined to say whether the U.S. government had any role in North Korea's Internet problems.
Gee, I wonder how that happened? The Washington Times has a clue:
In the shadows of the Sony hacking incident and North Korea’s massive Internet outage, the Pentagon has quietly built a multibillion-dollar cyberwarfare capability and trained its commanders to integrate these weapons into their battlefield plans.

U.S. Cyber Command was officially stood up in 2010, based at Fort Meade in the Maryland suburbs of the nation’s capital, consolidating intelligence and cyberwarfare capabilities of the Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines under one house. Soon, billions of dollars were being invested in the concept that cyberattackers targeting America should be prepared to sustain their own damage.

[...]While the U.S. government remained mum Monday on whether it was behind Pyongyang’s downed Internet service, it offered a clear and confident message that the Pentagon is equipped to conduct such offensive operations in cyberspace.

Army Lt. Col. Valerie Henderson, a Pentagon spokeswoman, said the Defense Department constantly prepares to counter cyberthreats. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf described the U.S. retaliation against North Korea for the Sony hack this way: “Some will be seen. Some may not be seen.”
Perhaps this is the modern cyber equivalent of a shot across the bows. Or a slap across the ass.


Fredd said...

Hopefully this is not the 'proportional' response that was promised. Remember, Obama vowed that if the other guys brought a knife, he'd bring a gun. That's the kind of proportionality I want.

A lousy few hours of no internet in Pyongyang? I want to see every computer in their teensy, tiny little dictatorship melted to a pile of sticky, smoking vinyl.

That's the kind of proportionality I want to see.

sig94 said...

Fredd - I'd like to see every North Korean user forced to watch a dancing banana, non-stop, for ever.

Kid said...

I was going to say turn them off forever but after Sig's comment I'd say redirect all NK traffic to a single web page that only shows kimmy in a pink dress and where he has lots of make up on. hahah