North Korean Internet goes dark
North Korea's Internet went dark for approximately 9.5 hours, one week after the FBI accused the country of masterminding the Sony hack.
The North Korean Internet and the Sony hack
Internet access in North Korea was restored after being cut off for almost 10 hours on Monday. One week earlier, the U.S. government accused the country of hacking Sony's network. Bloomberg reported that according to DYN Research, two state-run news websites were back up and running the next day.
North Korea's Internet is already spotty, but began experiencing intermittent problems yesterday, then went out completely. Doug Madory, director of Internet analysis at DYN Research commented that the situation seemed strange.
"I don't know that someone is launching a cyber-attack against North Korea, but this isn't normal for them," Madory said, reported Bloomberg. "It is kind of out of the ordinary. This is not like anything I've seen before."
A cyber battle between nations
U.S. President Barack Obama commented last week that Sony's hack was serious and resulted in significant damage. The president also said that the U.S. would respond, reported Bloomberg. North Korea warned that it would also retaliate. The communist nation has said that it does not know the identity of the hackers who perpetrated the hack against Sony. The hackers who claimed responsibility for the attack call themselves "Guardians of Peace."
A U.S. official told NBC News that the the Internet blackout was not caused by American parties. It is not clear what caused the outage, but it seems that somehow it relates to the film The Interview. The movie, produced by Sony, is a fictional action-comedy with a plot based on the attempted assassination of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The Guardians of Peace have advised Sony that unless they want their confidential dispersed, they should not release the film. It was recently reported, however, that the film will be released on Christmas day.
Most North Korean citizens don't have access to the Internet, but the country's elite do and are the ones most likely affected by the outage. DYN research conducted performance tests to discover the issue.
"It seemed like in the last 24 hours it was getting progressively worse until it went offline," Madory said, according to NBC News.
While there is little information that comes from inside of the borders of North Korea, it is possible that the Internet went out so that any possible links between Sony and the North Korean government could be eliminated.