23 Jun 2014

Hong Kong Poll Hit by Massive DDoS Attack

Some 680,000 votes from an online democracy poll on the upcoming Hong Kong elections were declared invalid after the “biggest DDoS attack in the history," according to The Register.

PopVote.hk, the site operating the unofficial poll, received more than half a million votes during the first day of voting when the attack began. It seems attackers used a global network of compromised computers to disable the services with a massive amount of traffic.

"We saw 300Gbps at the peak of the attack, but it was likely significantly larger than that," said Matthew Prince, CEO of the web performance company maintaining the voting website. "This may well have been the largest attack we, or anyone else, have ever seen. It definitely was the most sophisticated."

It appears the company had signs of the attack. "Since we had advanced warning the attack was coming, we'd put in place measures to sinkhole traffic in certain regions so it never hit our network," Prince added.

The source of the attack has not been identified.

Popvote.hk was asking Hong Kong residents to state their opinion about their preferred political representatives to lead Hong Kong. The Chinese government proposes a number of candidates and the winner is voted in by a 1,200-member Election Committee.