Russian news sites suffer DoS attacks

The websites of Kommersant, a leading Russian newspaper and the Echo of Moscow radio station suffered massive Denial of Service attacks between 1st and 2nd of May, leading to significant disruption. The two sites were unavailable for most of the day on Wednesday in what some have already termed as revenge attacks for the political views of the editors in these news outlets.

According to reports in Russian media, the first signs of trouble on the Echo of Moscow site appeared late on May 1st, which is a public holiday in Russia. A second DoS attack was registered by network administrators on May 2nd. Shortly afterwards, the Kommersant site also went down, leading to speculations about possible links between the two incidents. Service on both sites was restored by administrators later in the day.

Pavel Chernikov, editor in chief of the Kommersant website, said the attack had not yet been traced, and that the perpetrators remained anonymous. However, in statements to the news site, he mentioned his belief that the attacks might be linked to the publication of a police interview with the exiled oligarch Boris Berezovsky. The interview was carried out in London at the request of the Russian prosecution service investigating the death last year of Alexander Litvinenko from radiation poisoning.