Blizzard And ‘World of Warcraft’ Taken Down By DDoS Attacks

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DDOS attacks are a fact of life these days, it would seem. People were having trouble logging into Blizzard games such as Diablo 3 and World of Warcraft last night, as a result of a DDOS attack on the company’s servers that notorious DDoS group Lizard Squad has taken credit for. The company says that the problem has since been resolved. I have no clue, but if I had to venture out on a limb I’d say this is in some very roundabout way related to the recent closure of one of World of Wacraft’s most popular private servers. Not that anyone involved did it, but that World of Warcraft was in the news for reasons that some could take offense to, and someone decided that this was the best course of action.

Blizzard reminds us in a forum post that a DDOS attack is not quite the same thing as a hack, and that no user information was compromised:

“These attacks are just flooding our internet tubes: no actual account information, payment information, or character data is at risk. Given some of the realm stability issues caused by the service interruptions there may be some log loss when loot is dropped, or crafting occurs. Our Game Masters will do our very best to locate any missing items if a ticket is submitted.”

DDOS attacks are among the most common kind of cybercrime, but they’re more akin to vandalism than anything else. They’re easy to do and difficult to defend against: basically they work by sending huge amounts of dummy traffic to a given server, overwhelming it and shutting it down. Video game companies are routine and popular targets, most notably in a series of large attacks against Microsoft and Sony on Christmas 2014. They’re not the biggest thing in the world, but they are terribly annoying, and can cause a real headache for those tasked with defending against them.