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Israeli Infrastructure Proves Too Strong For Anonymous 569

Mephistophocles writes "Ever since the beginning of Operation Pillar of Defense, hackers have been working overtime to strike a blow against the Israeli government's computer systems, Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said Sunday. No fewer than 44 million attacks have been recorded since the operation began five days ago — with nearly all of them failing, thanks to the recent strengthening of computer defense systems in Israel. Speaking at a special press conference at the Government Computing Center in Jerusalem about the cyber war against Israel that has accompanied Hamas's rocket attacks, Steinitz said that hackers 'are trying to disable the symbols of Israeli sovereignty, to enter web sites and install anti-Israel content, thus compromising information and data and damaging the government's ability to serve the public.' Most of the attacks, he said, were against government sites, like the Prime Minister's Office site, and security-related sites, such as that of the Home Front Command, the body charged with informing Israelis on how to protect themselves in the event of an attack. Out of those 44 million-plus attacks on government and defense related sites, said Steinitz, only one succeeded – partially. One site, which he did not name, was 'wobbly for a few minutes,' but quickly recovered. Even though the government has been successful in warding off hack attacks, Steinitz said that government sites were fully backed up and mirrored, meaning that they could be replaced by a duplicate site instantly if the original site were compromised."
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Israeli Infrastructure Proves Too Strong For Anonymous

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  • Sounds like first class COINTELPRO.
    • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

      by Aardpig ( 622459 )

      Lox Bagels or GTFO!

    • I wouldn't say first class. While I think Anonymous is really overhyped here, it does seem resistant to cointelpro. First off because cointelpro tactics weren't designed for internet groups or organizations. Second because they are, to a degree, amorphous. Saying "Ha ha, we withstood your attacks!" isn't going to discourage anonymous, it's going to invite more attacks. If Israel actually is making up attacks that didn't happen, all the moreso.
  • by peter303 ( 12292 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:36PM (#42046967)
    If it was necessary to keep the networks operating. These kids, like Assange, can be naive.
    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) *

      Assange seems to have been fully aware of the threats to his life from the start. And even Mossad can't murder European citizens with impunity, so it rather depends on where in the world these hackers live.

  • Heh (Score:5, Funny)

    by Nexion ( 1064 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:36PM (#42046975)

    The "cyber attacks" against Israel are about as impressive as Palestinian missile technology.

    • Re:Heh (Score:4, Interesting)

      by twotacocombo ( 1529393 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:44PM (#42047107)

      The "cyber attacks" against Israel are about as impressive as Palestinian missile technology.

      Care to elaborate on this? I'm quite impressed by their homebrewed rockets. Far more effective than anything you or I could conjure up, for sure. They're extremely effective as a psychological weapon as well. Even if they never hit their target, they're still causing damage to the enemy.

      • by Hentes ( 2461350 )

        They are not homebrewn but smuggled from Iran through Egypt.

        • Re:Heh (Score:5, Informative)

          by twotacocombo ( 1529393 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:51PM (#42047223)

          They are not homebrewn but smuggled from Iran through Egypt.

          The Qassam series of rockets are certainly manufactured by the Palestinians. The longer range rockets are of Iranian, Chinese, and Russian origins.

          • by mjwx ( 966435 )

            They are not homebrewn but smuggled from Iran through Egypt.

            The Qassam series of rockets are certainly manufactured by the Palestinians. The longer range rockets are of Russian origins.

            There, fixed that for you. Chinese and Iranian rocket technologies are based on Russian rockets.

            The entirely Palestinian made rockets are at the same sophistication level as the Katyusha rockets of WWII... Then again they don't have to be that complex to be effective at sowing terror. The more complex rockets are imported whole or made from imported components as they dont have enough high tech industry in the Gaza strip or West Bank to produce them.

    • by siddesu ( 698447 )
      Actually, this piece of news underlines nicely what i have been saying for ages. there is no "cyber warfare", it is mostly one big cost-cutting measure for the management of software/it companies and their larger customers, which dumps the protection of incompetence and irresponsibility onto the public finances.
  • If there isn't a picture of Israel getting fucked on/by the Internet -- there soon will be.

  • Sort of like a 5th-grade bully pissing on a main battle tank. 'Success' might mean the tank got wet, but it's not like you're going to slow it down.
    • by c0lo ( 1497653 )

      Sort of like a 5th-grade bully pissing on a main battle tank. 'Success' might mean the tank got wet, but it's not like you're going to slow it down.

      Careful with the analogies, buddy.
      Pissing on a full-speed marching tank and getting it wet would still qualify as an impressing feat in my view.

  • Lies (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Well, first of all, the guy's a liar. Besides his statistics being absurd beyond the pale, he has every incentive to hide the truth, as it feeds the well-oiled Israeli propaganda machine -- and we would do the same thing, as would any marginally-competent intelligence division.

    More importantly, though, the simple fact is that Anon isn't what it used to be. Many of the power-hitters have moved on to bigger and better things -- things that pay real money. The few with talent that are still around are often lo

  • 44 million attacks (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:40PM (#42047041)

    44 million attacks

    A DDoS is a single attack.

  • I'm sure every ping on a port scan counts as a failed attack here.

    • by Aardpig ( 622459 )

      Surely pings aren't the payload in a port scan (although they might be used in a precursor scan)? Ping is ICMP, whereas port scans (or indeed the very concept of ports) is TCP or UDP.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    (Posting anon for obvious reasons. This is a joke!)

    Recently, my sister confided a fantastically silly plan for halting the missile strikes in and around the gaza strip.

    Take a rickety ald crop duster, paint it in North Korean colors, and use it to drop crushed up pork rinds, and cheap beer all over the conflict area.

    The beauty of the plan, is the incluson of poorly translated english language leaflets stating that the fearless leader, kim jong un, has heard of the suffering of the people in the region, and i

    • With any luck the scattering of crushed pork rinds would render the area selectively uninhabitable to the worst fanatics on both sides (both Jews and Muslims avoid pork). It would be alomost like setting off a dirty bomb but the "contamination" would only affect the hard liners. The hard liners all have to leave since they deeply believe that they can't have pork in any way shape or form and the more reasonable people who remain then sort out the mess.

      I'll start grinding pork rinds.


  • by TheSpoom ( 715771 ) <> on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:47PM (#42047157) Homepage Journal

    Anons everywhere are now thinking to themselves, "challenge accepted."

    • by Kergan ( 780543 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:55PM (#42047295)

      Anons everywhere are now thinking to themselves, "challenge accepted."

      According to TFA, they tried already -- they're strongly suspected to have to anyway. But you wouldn't know from TFS, where anonymous only appears in the title.

      Else yeah, agreed. They might might as well draw a target on their IT infrastructure's forehead.

  • Not that surprising (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DaveAtFraud ( 460127 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @05:52PM (#42047241) Homepage Journal

    When your defenses are tested on a regular and ongoing basis, they become very good. It's not like the attacks from Anonymous were the first nor will they be the last. Kudos to the people who created and maintain these systems.

    It would be interesting to know if the Iraelis are doing something the rest of the world doesn't know about (chances are they wouldn't tell us but who could blame them?) or are just rigorously implementing standard computer and network security measures.


    • Of course they are doing something everyone else isn't. They are sending the geeks version of Mossad after them!
    • by Tom ( 822 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @07:03PM (#42048307) Homepage Journal

      It would be interesting to know if the Iraelis are doing something the rest of the world doesn't know about

      Unlikely, except for maybe a few isolated tricks.

      But look at what they are doing in airport security and you quickly spot why they succeed where the rest of the western world struggles. They are focussed on actual, real, effective security measures instead of security theatre. They really want to prevent attacks, instead of giving everyone a warm and fuzzy feeling.

      I work in IT security (yes, you can hire me). Most companies waste incredible amounts of money on replacing their current 5" steel front door with a new 7" steel front door, all the while ignoring that the back door is plywood and typically unlocked. Or they buy a shiny new firewall, but don't train anyone to configure and run it professionally (similarities to the TSA spending billions on body scanners but paying the people who monitor them minimum wage? Nah... never...).

      • by Rich0 ( 548339 )

        Yup, I went through Israeli airport security once. I was actually concerned I might have been detained. Everybody gets a personal interview. The interviewer was fairly intimidating. The interview wasn't very long, but I got a clear understanding that if it didn't go well it could become VERY long.

  • Someone should tell this Mr. Chan at Gizmodo, according to him it's been a "whopping takedown." []
  • by klingers48 ( 968406 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @06:18PM (#42047663)
    This is Israel we're talking about folks... Of course they were going to be able to withstand these attacks. It's an offshoot of Israel's unparalleled second-strike capability mentality. It's all they have.

    Can you think of any other country in the world that is so completely and utterly beset by constant regional threats and actually has the resources to do something about it? If there is any country that is going to build proactive and pragmatic redundancy into their national IT infrastructure to protect it from external threats (and do it right), it's Israel. They have a lot more to lose by doing it wrong.
    • by durdur ( 252098 )

      I'm sure that they have good security technology and procedures.
      But you are only as strong as your weakest link. And any large and complex system has bugs and vulnerabilities, whether you are talking about off the shelf software such as Linux & Apache, or custom software. And even if the endpoint software is bulletproof, the network may not be. So they shouldn't brag about being uncrackable. They probably aren't.

      • by Rich0 ( 548339 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @10:42PM (#42050495) Homepage

        Maybe, but having hung out with people with a military background, I can vouch that there is a fairly deep-set appreciation for security that is engendered within the armed forces. Now, consider the fact that all Israeli citizens serve in the military - male and female. I think that this has a big cultural impact.

        Also, factor in that the whole country is about the size of New Jersey - you're not far from a potential battleground anywhere you go. Every adult probably knows somebody who witnessed an act of terrorism firsthand - they were having incidents almost daily a decade ago. So, you get the under siege mentality as well. Compare US border security with Israeli border security and you'll see a stark contrast - you might as well compare a US state line to the Berlin wall.

        The Israelis that I've met over the years don't really strike me as being anti-arabic or anything. In fact, it seems like they try to foster relationships where they can, since every so often they have to go on active duty and when you're patrolling some Palestinian neighborhood it doesn't hurt to be on good terms.

  • or were there any "attacks" worse than the usual script-kiddie ddos on a poor, unimportant webserver?

  • by Yvanhoe ( 564877 ) on Tuesday November 20, 2012 @10:03PM (#42050171) Journal
    Man, with 40 millions cyber-terrorists to catch, I surely hope the cyber-defense department is well funded... Do we have to repeat such numbers when they are obviously irrelevant? There have obviously not been 40 millions different attacks. They have probably counted the number of connections from a DDoS attempt. By putting such a number here, we have strictly no informations on the number of attacks. It could be a single DDoS so far as we know...

"Don't worry about people stealing your ideas. If your ideas are any good, you'll have to ram them down people's throats." -- Howard Aiken