By GETTY IMAGES
V.I. Consortium has been hit with a DDoS attack following the publishing of a story about the V.I. Attorney General daughter’s no-bid, $70,000 contract with the Dept. of Tourism being renewed for a second year.
DDoS, or distributed denial-of-service attack, “is a malicious attempt to disrupt the normal traffic of a targeted server, service or network by overwhelming the target or its surrounding infrastructure with a flood of Internet traffic,” according to Cloudflare, an American web infrastructure and website security company that provides content delivery network and DDoS mitigation services.
“From a high level, a DDoS attack is like an unexpected traffic jam clogging up the highway, preventing regular traffic from arriving at its destination,” Cloudflare added.
The Consortium’s hosting company has confirmed that the downtime on the site is caused by a DDoS attack.
According to Equifax, a global data, analytics, and technology company, motives behind a DDoS attack can be spurred on by political reasons and business interests, among other driving forces, “leading many to point the finger at governments, terrorist groups, disgruntled employees and sometimes, thrill-seeking lone hackers.”
The Consortium immediately invested in further security services to help mitigate such attacks. Company founder and publisher Ernice Gilbert said because Consortium will continue to produce content that seeks to shed light on otherwise unknown matters, more DDoS attacks are possible and will be attempted.
“Some may even be successful at clogging traffic to our site for a period of time, but that will only strengthen our resolve and commitment to shedding light on matters of importance to the Virgin Islands and the Caribbean region,” he said.
As of 9:30 a.m. the attack was still ongoing, but the added security services are expected to eventually mitigate the problem. “We are working overtime on our end to bring the site back to its normal load times,” Mr. Gilbert said. “Our consultation with experts will continue until we’re able to find the best solution for what we know will be ongoing attempts by bad actors to stop the flow of important information to the public.”