Millions upon millions of websites, as well as all GoDaddy email accounts, were down yesterday due to a sophisticated hacking attempt. The sites went down in the early afternoon and stayed down until late last night due to a DNS service outage. The outage included GoDaddy.com itself.
AnonymousOwn3r, an alleged leader of Anonymous, is claiming that he and his team are the culprits behind the attack. The hacktivism group is famous for taking down Megaupload, hacking into government files, starting The Pirate Bay, and vehemently opposing SOPA and associated laws. GoDaddy supported SOPA when it was proposed.
GoDaddy did its best to keep its customers updated throughout the outage. The GoDaddy site itself had an apology from Scott Wagner as the default landing page while everything was being worked on, and the site’s Twitter account stated that the company was “feverishly working to resolve [the issue] as soon as possible”.
AnonymousOwn3r himself claimed that Anonymous itself had nothing to do with the attack, and it was a personal vendetta that led him to personally wage the attack on GoDaddy. Late last year, Anonymous sent a message to GoDaddy that warned them against supporting SOPA through online means, and GoDaddy did so almost immediately. AnonymousOwn3r claims that he is not personally against GoDaddy, but that “his purpose will become clear over the next few months.”
As of this moment, users can log into their accounts and change any personal information, but many site-editing features are still down until further notice. It is recommended that you immediately change your passwords and other private information for your own protection.
UPDATE. GoDaddy claims that this was not a hacking attempt at all – rather, the company has determined that “the outage was due to a series of internal network events that corrupted router data tables. We have implemented measured to prevent this from occurring again.” Wagner, the CEO of GoDaddy, said that at absolutely “no time was any customer data at risk or were any of our systems compromised.”