BBC websites hit by cyberattack

LONDON , The BBC’s websites were down for three hours after a cyberattack. No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.

A website featuring BBC iPlayer. File photo by chrisdorney/Shutterstock
A website featuring BBC iPlayer. File photo by chrisdorney/Shutterstock.












The attack on the London-based broadcaster began early Thursday morning with users complaining about the unavailability of the BBC’s iPlayer and its many websites. The problems were traced to “distributed denial of service,” or DDoS, a technique in which a website is overwhelmed by a massive number of requests from users, and shuts down.

It is a common method by which hackers launch attacks as a form of protest or as a diversion to mask more invasive cyberattacks, but there has been no announced claim of responsibility for the attack.

The BBC began correcting the problem by 7 a.m. Thursday; most online functions were available, although loading slowly, by 11 a.m. During the outage it admitted only that the sites were compromised by a “technical issue.” The BBC later said its websites were “back up and operating normally.”

By Ed Adamczyk