Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Vulnerabilities / Threats

Comcast Outage Traced to Teenage Hackers

DNS attack left service provider down for five hours

The hackers responsible for Wednesday's attack on Comcast say they were angry with the company, and "wanted to take them out," according to a news report.

Comcast, one of the largest Internet service providers in the U.S., found that its primary Website, Comcast.net, had been defaced at around 11 p.m. on Wednesday. The hackers had redirected the traffic to another Web server, replacing some of the site's content with their own greeting.

Comcast replaced the greeting with an "under construction" message in the wee hours of Thursday morning, as the hackers led Comcast technicians on a merry chase, redirecting traffic to multiple hosts for several hours. Comcast's users were unable to access their email via the site for as long as 12 hours.

Yesterday, the two teenage attackers granted an interview to Kevin Poulsen, a well-known hacker who now writes for Wired magazine. In the interview, the two hackers said they tried to warn Comcast about the vulnerability, but a Comcast engineer scoffed at them, inciting the angry exploit.

"If he wasn't such a prick, he could have avoided all of that," says 19-year-old "EBK," who perpetrated the attack along with his 18-year-old compatriot, who goes by the handle of "Defiant." "I wasn't even really thinking. Plus, I'm just so mad at Comcast."

The report indicates that the teenagers found a vulnerability in Comcast's domain management console at Network Solutions, which also maintains domain names and administration for many other sites. A Network Solutions spokesperson denied the report, stating that "we now know that it was nothing on our end."

The hackers expect to be found and arrested, according to the report.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Discuss" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message.

Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Ransomware Is Not the Problem
Adam Shostack, Consultant, Entrepreneur, Technologist, Game Designer,  6/9/2021
How Can I Test the Security of My Home-Office Employees' Routers?
John Bock, Senior Research Scientist,  6/7/2021
New Ransomware Group Claiming Connection to REvil Gang Surfaces
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  6/10/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win an Amazon Gift Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: Google's new See No Evil policy......
Current Issue
The State of Cybersecurity Incident Response
In this report learn how enterprises are building their incident response teams and processes, how they research potential compromises, how they respond to new breaches, and what tools and processes they use to remediate problems and improve their cyber defenses for the future.
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
PUBLISHED: 2021-06-20
The Quiz And Survey Master – Best Quiz, Exam and Survey Plugin WordPress plugin before 7.1.18 did not sanitise or escape its result_id parameter when displaying an existing quiz result page, leading to a reflected Cross-Site Scripting issue. This c...
PUBLISHED: 2021-06-18
RIOT-OS 2021.01 before commit 44741ff99f7a71df45420635b238b9c22093647a contains a buffer overflow which could allow attackers to obtain sensitive information.
PUBLISHED: 2021-06-18
SerenityOS contains a buffer overflow in the set_range test in TestBitmap which could allow attackers to obtain sensitive information.
PUBLISHED: 2021-06-18
SerenityOS in test-crypto.cpp contains a stack buffer overflow which could allow attackers to obtain sensitive information.
PUBLISHED: 2021-06-18
SerenityOS before commit 3844e8569689dd476064a0759d704bc64fb3ca2c contains a directory traversal vulnerability in tar/unzip that may lead to command execution or privilege escalation.