Secular Student Alliance Website Back Up After Attacks
On Monday, July 9th, 2012, the day after our annual conference, our website was the victim of a Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS) attack. This brought down our website for most of Monday. Our site was attacked again on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. The attacks on Wednesday and Friday also brought down our site, but by Saturday we had sufficiently hardened our site against these attacks that our site stayed functional during the attack.
It is nearly impossible to determine the source of a Distribute Denial of Service attack and no one has claimed responsibility. These attacks do not typically compromise confidential data, but rather just make a website unusable by overwhelming it. We are unaware of any confidential information being stolen or altered.
Our hats are off to our web hosting company (picosecond.org) for getting us back up quickly and hardening our site against future attacks. We are also very thankful to them for helping us shop around for services to protect ourselves from these cowardly attempts to silence the Secular Student Alliance. After receiving quotes as high as $2,400/month for protection, we were able to find a very satisfactory service that will cost only $200/month. We are annoyed at having to spend extra money to be part of the market place of ideas, but it could have been much worse.
As part of the process of hardening the site against DDOS attacks, we have taken several other steps which make our site even more secure than it was before the attacks. Thank you for your patience during the attacks.