Canada is facing their own cyberattacks. Last week, many government Canadian websites were attacked by hackers, possibly Anonymous. (via CCLA)
The U.S. isn't the only country facing several internet attacks. Last week, Canadian officials confirmed that a “cyberattack,” a denial of service campaign, has taken down government websites on the gc.ca web domain. Tony Clement, a member of Canadian parliament, broke the news on Twitter where he advised people to use the phone to reach Ottawa until service was restored. This means almost all federal institution sites were inaccessible online, including Natural Resources, Justice, Foreign Affairs and Trade and Development. Many were worried that government email accounts were affected as well. Canadian public safety minister Steven Blaney later confirmed personal information was not comprised by the attack.
After the attack, activist group Anonymous later claimed they were responsible for the outage in a video posted shortly after the news broke. They said it was a response to the passing of Canada's Bill C-51 into law, which grants spy agencies, like Canadian Security Intelligence Service, powers to violate digital privacy for the sake of fighting terrorism. “Today, Anons around the world took a stand for your rights,” the video said. “We will not allow our freedoms to be stripped one by one.” So far, the video has not been verified. Normal service returned to the sites around 2 p.m. ET.
This attack is the most high-profile cyberattack in Canada since the Chinese state-backed hackers broke into the country's premier scientific research agency last year. Apparently, the hackers responsible for the attack were trying to use the National Research Council computers as a way to reach the rest of the federal government. Despite this, Clement looked on the bright side of things and realized it could've been a lot worse.
“I think our imaginations could think of ways in which it could be worse, but obviously, this is inconvenient for the public and for government, and we don’t like to see it happen,” Clement said. He even admitted Ottawa is a constant target for these cyberattacks. “There are incursions practically every day of every year. Usually, those incursions are unsuccessful … and so we always have to continue to make our sites and our information as impervious to attack as possible. Usually, that works. Sometimes, it doesn’t, and today was a day when it didn’t work,” he said.
If this recent attack was really the result of the C-51 Bill, then it seems to be causing more problems than its solved as it was originally intended. Many in the senate aren't too thrilled with the bill either. After the bill was announced, a website called #Stop51 went live and features a conservative letter warning Prime Minister Stephen Harper of the costs this could have. So far, the letter has accumulated more than 60 signatures as a means to repeal the bill. We'll have to wait and see if anymore attacks rise due to the passing of the bill.
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