Some web services provided by internet giant Google were briefly disrupted on Monday after a Google Cloud IP issue that the company wrote in a blog post was “external” and under investigation, though what exactly happened remains unclear. According to the Wall Street Journal, some Google services were “temporarily unreachable for some users after some traffic intended to reach the web giant was rerouted through other networks,” though the company has not publicly disclosed whether it has determined the issue was a technical error or a hacking attempt. The AP reported, however, that the re-routing may have been the result of a border gateway protocol hijacking attack—in which an internet hub responsible for directing global internet traffic lanes is compromised to send that traffic to the wrong destinations. Intelligence company ThousandEyes’ Alex Henthorn-Iwane told the AP some of Google’s search and cloud hosting services were routed through Russian (Transtelecom), Chinese (China Telecom), and Nigerian (MainOne) telecommunications companies: Alex Henthorn-Iwane, an executive at the network-intelligence company ThousandEyes, called Monday’s incident the worst affecting Google that his company has seen. He said he suspected nation-state involvement because the traffic was effectively landing at state-run China Telecom. A recent study by U.S. Naval War College and Tel Aviv University scholars says China systematically hijacks and diverts U.S. internet traffic. Global internet traffic routing systems are potentially vulnerable because in an era where the internet has become one of the world’s foremost geopolitical battlegrounds, the independence and neutrality of providers is not always a… [Read full story]
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