Distributed Denial of Service Attacks Against Independent Media and Human Rights Sites
Ethan Zuckerman, Hal Roberts, and Jillian C. York
Tuesday, January 25, 12:30 pm
Berkman Center, 23 Everett Street, second floor
RSVP required for those attending in person to Amar Ashar (firstname.lastname@example.org)
This event will be webcast live at 12:30 pm ET and archived on our site shortly after.
Ethan Zuckerman, Hal Roberts, and Jillian C. York will discuss the recently released Berkman Center report on "Distributed Denial of Service Attacks Against Independent Media and Human Rights Sites."
Ethan Zuckerman served a fellow of the Berkman Center from 2003 through 2009. Since 2009, he's been a senior researcher at the center, working on projects that focus on the impact of technology and media on the developing world and on quantitative analysis of media. With Hal Roberts, he is working on comparative studies of tools for censorship circumvention, techniques for blocking-resistant publishing for human rights sites and on the Media Cloud framework for quantitative study of digital media.
Hal Roberts is the long time geek in/out of residence at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School. He is currently doing research in the areas of internet filtering circumvention, botnet and other grey forms of surveillance, and analysis of main stream and new/citizen media. Hal has worked on the technical side of many Berkman projects over the years, including H2O, Weblogs at Harvard Law, and Global Voices Online.
Jillian York joined the Berkman Center in the summer of 2008 as project coordinator for the OpenNet Initiative. In that capacity, she works with ONI's many volunteers and contractors around the world to carry out ONI testing for Internet filtering. She also blogs for ONI, conducts research, and coordinates DDoS and Circumvention research.
Jillian also works on the Herdict Web project, coordinating
translation, blogging, and maintaining Herdict's social media presence.
She is involved with Global Voices Online, where she serves as an author on the Middle East/North Africa team, as well as Global Voices Advocacy. She is also a member of the Committee to Protect Bloggers.
Prior to joining Berkman, Jillian lived in Morocco, where she taught English and wrote Culture Smart! Morocco, a guide to Moroccan culture. She was also involved in digital activism projects there, and has given presentations on using online tools for activism. Most recently, she served as a contributing editor to Fodor's Morocco. Jillian studied at Binghamton University and Al Akhawayn University in Morocco.
About the DDoS Paper
Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) is an increasingly common Internet phenomenon capable of silencing Internet speech, usually for a brief interval but occasionally for longer. In this paper, we explore the specific phenomenon of DDoS attacks on independent media and human rights organizations, seeking to understand the nature and frequency of these attacks, their efficacy, and the responses available to sites under attack. Our report offers advice to independent media and human rights sites likely to be targeted by DDoS but comes to the uncomfortable conclusion that there is no easy solution to these attacks for many of these sites, particularly for attacks that exhaust network bandwidth.