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Internet

Irish ISP spars with Indonesia over ".tp"

Connect-Ireland lodges a protest with the government of Indonesia over a successful attack on the ".tp" domain established by the government of East Timor a year ago.

An Irish Internet service provider has lodged a protest with the government of Indonesia over a successful attack on the ".tp" domain.

The ISP and domain name guardian, Connect-Ireland, posted "Nazis Creating Chaos on the 'Net," a statement claiming that a "highly organized hacking spree" was waged against it in order to bring down the ".tp" domain established by the government of East Timor a year ago.

East Timor is under military occupation by Indonesia. Today, Indonesia offered its first indication in 23 years that it will consider granting East Timor autonomy, according to the BBC, which earlier reported the domain attack.

Connect-Ireland acknowledged that the attackers had not been identified, but pointed out the Indonesian government's disapproval of East Timor's ownership of an Internet domain.

"The Indonesian government is known to be extremely antagonistic towards this display of virtual sovereignty," the statement reads.

Governments around the world are preparing for the advent of so-called cyberterrorism, or information warfare. President Clinton last week outlined plans to prepare the United States for such attacks.

If the attack on the East Timor Net domain were proven to have originated with the Indonesian government, it would be one of the most serious assaults to date by one nation against another to have been waged over the Internet.

Connect-Ireland said it would take advantage of the downtime brought about by the attack to fortify its system.

"As a top-level domain guardian, Connect-Ireland has a special responsibility to ensure that none of its services are used as a base for attacks on other systems," the statement reads. "An international effort to trace all those responsible has been launched by the system administrators of the institutions affected, including Connect-Ireland."

The Irish ISP said it had lodged a formal protest with the Indonesian Embassy in London.