#privacy: Wikipedia forced to go offline after DDoS attack

Wikipedia was forced offline in multiple countries over the weekend after being hit by a DDoS attack. 

The outages impacted users across Europe and in parts of the Middle East. In a blog post on Saturday, a spokesperson from Wikimedia Foundation, explained how Wikipedia, one of the world’s most popular sites, “attracts ‘bad faith’ actors”. 

The post doesn’t go into detail as to what exactly happened, however Wikimedia’s German Twitter account confirmed that the reason the online encyclopedia went offline was due to a wide-ranging DDoS attack. 

In a statement Wikimedia wrote:

“Along with the rest of the web, we operate in an increasingly sophisticated and complex environment where threats are continuously evolving. Because of this, the Wikimedia communities and Wikimedia Foundation have created dedicated systems and staff to regularly monitor and address risks. If a problem occurs, we learn, we improve, and we prepare to be better for next time.”

Reports on the outage started appearing at around 19:00 BST on Friday. Affected countries included the UK, Germany, Greece and Saudi Arabia. 

“We condemn these sorts of attacks. They’re not just about taking Wikipedia offline. Takedown attacks threaten everyone’s fundamental rights to freely access and share information. 

“We in the Wikimedia movement and Foundation are committed to protecting these rights for everyone.”

The site appears to be up and running as normal in the UK as of this morning.


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