Kids, not Russian government, attacking Georgia's Net, says researcher

Attacks on Georgia's Internet may be the work of "overexcited" youths and not Russian officials, according to the Zero Day Emergency Response Team's founder.

Robert Vamosi
Robert Vamosi Former Editor

As CNET's former resident security expert, Robert Vamosi has been interviewed on the BBC, CNN, MSNBC, and other outlets to share his knowledge about the latest online threats and to offer advice on personal and corporate security.

Initial information suggests that Internet attacks on Georgian Web sites over the last two weeks are the work of kids, according to one researcher, while another says the intensity of these attacks is short-lived when compared with attacks in Estonia last year.

In an e-mail to CNET News, Gadi Evron, founder of the Zero Day Emergency Response Team, said that "although the impact on their Web sites is clear, I believe this may end up being just some kids who got overexcited, with Georgia being ill-prepared to say the least. "

Posting on CircleID, Evron wrote that there are botnet attacks against .ge Web sites, but the Internet infrastructure doesn't appear to be directly attacked. "Not every fighting is warfare," wrote Evron. "While Georgia is obviously under a DDoS attacks and it is political in nature, it doesn't so far seem different than any other online aftermath by fans. Political tensions are always followed by online attacks by sympathizers."

In May 2007, the Baltic nation of Estonia was attacked online and its Internet infrastructure crippled.

On Tuesday, Jose Nazario of Arbor Networks offered in a blog more information on the strength and duration of the attacks. "Compared to the May 2007 Estonian attacks, these are more intense but have lasted (so far) for less time. This could be due to a number of factors, including more sizable botnets with more bandwidth, better bandwidth at the victims, changes in our observations, or other factors."

Nazario also said that there is evidence that the Georgians had responded by attacking a Russian newspaper Web site.