Who On Earth Would Attack Github for its Anti-Great Firewall Projects?

By Kate Knibbs on at

Github is getting hammered by a huge distributed-denial-of-service attack. Looks like it angered off the wrong pro-censorship group: The attack is aimed at two popular projects, Great Fire and CN-NY Times, that help Chinese citizens get around their government's restrictive online censors to access blocked content.

Who does that??

The attackers are using China's search engine Baidu to conduct a sort of "HTTP hijacking," in the words of the security researcher from Insight Labs who discovered how the attack was going down.

When people tried to use Baidu from outside of China, it appear an actor with access to the traffic as it came close to China's inner network injected the HTTP connection of the person trying to see Baidu with a malicious script. This script redirects the web traffic back to Great Fire and CN-NY Times, flooding those sites.

Since Baidu is extremely popular, the overflow of traffic was too much for Github. It was still fighting off the attack a few hours ago:

There is no evidence that confirms who conducted this attack but you are welcome to make an educated guess in the comments.


Image via Flickr / Dan Hankins