Extortionists down Feedly newsreader site

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Extortionists down Feedly newsreader site

Denial of service attack.

Online RSS reader Feedly remains down today, after suffering a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack launched by unknown criminals attempting to extort money overnight.

Feedly confirmed the attack and said it was working with law enforcement and unnamed victims to resolve it:

Criminals are attacking feedly with a distributed denial of service attack (DDoS). The attacker is trying to extort us money to make it stop. We refused to give in and are working with our network providers to mitigate the attack as best as we can.

No user data was compromised or lost in the attack, according to the company.

The attack comes after the popular note-taking service Evernote went offline yesterday. Feedly collaborates with and offers Evernote integration but at this stage, it is not known if the latter was also subject to an extortion attempt.

In March this year, project management site Basecamp came under a similar attack, with its network flooded by up to 20 gigabits per second of traffic. 

Prior to that, meeting and events organisation site Meetup was taken offline in February this year, with the extortionist asking for US$300 to stop the attack.

Like Feedly, neither Basecamp nor Meetup paid the blackmailers and suffered long outages.

As denial of service attacks are costly for victims yet cheap to arrange - one site quotes between US$10 to US$100 per hour depending on the size of the target - they have become increasingly popular with cyber criminals.

Last year, Greater Manchester Police in the UK arrested two Polish online game programmers who attempted to blackmail a web-based casino into handing over half of its revenue of nearly £30 million (A$54 million) or be taken offline.

The Polish pair launched a denial of service attack against the casino that lasted for around five hours and which resulted in costs of US$15,000 (A$16,000).

The extortionists pleaded guilty to the blackmail and both received five year sentences in December last year.

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