Microsoft Fends Off Hack Attack

The attack started early Tuesday morning in the US when Microsoft employees noticed massive spikes in traffic, said Adam Sohn, a spokesman for the Redmond, Wash.-based software company. Microsoft's Web site didn't shut down, but it did endure a 3% to 7% degradation in performance, Sohn said.

As a result, users weren't able to view pages immediately.

The attack against Microsoft came in the form of a "synflood," a type of denial-of-service attack that prevents PCs and Web servers from communicating. When this type of attack occurs, the server continues to send out new requests to identify the visiting computer without making a connection.

When the synflood began, Microsoft employees shut off access to the Web site once they determined which IP address the attack had come from, Sohn said. Another reason Microsoft's site was able to stay up is that it utilizes vast amounts of server capacity.

The one positive aspect of the attempted attack: Windows 2000 lived up to its expectations, Sohn said. "It was a great battle test for Windows 2000 - they came at us hard," but the security settings in the server level kept out the synflooding, he said.

Microsoft later reported the attack to law enforcement officials, said Sohn. He didn't specify which agencies the company notified. The only information that is known is where the attack physically came from, he added.

The company plans to step up its security efforts, said Sohn.

"Often Microsoft is a target because we're very visible, and we tend to be vigilant" in security efforts, Sohn said. Attempts are made every day to access corporate information on the the company's network and the site. Recent denial-of-service attacks on such sites as CNN and Yahoo heightened Microsoft's security, he said.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Kathleen Ohlson

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?