NUJP website latest target of 'coordinated campaign' vs critical news

MANILA, Philippines – The website of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines (NUJP) became the latest target in an ongoing series of cyberattacks against alternative, critical news organizations.

The website went down on the night of February 8, after a wave of distributed denial of services (DDoS) attack, and again on February 11. A DDoS attacks attempts to overload a web server with traffic in order to bring it down. In a statement, the NUJP described a massive attack that bombarded their site with 615 gigabytes of traffic in total.

This included a single attack that dropped 468 gigabytes on their site. This is 10 times the 50 gigabytes that brought down another alternative news site Bulatlat earlier, according to NUJP.

This wave of cyberattacks began in December 2018 which first hit the sites Pinoy Weekly, Kodao Productions, and Bulatlat. Kodao and Bulatlat were hit for a second time on January 25. The 3 are all members of the Altermidya network. 

The NUJP believes these cyberattacks are "part of a coordinated campaign to undermine alternative news and critical views in the Philippines." 

“The use of DDoS attacks to silence critical voices and opinions is the latest threat to press freedom. Blocking access to information is a violation of people’s rights and weakens democracy. We will stand with NUJP and the media community as they strive for press freedom," said the International Federation of Journalists, of which the NUJP is an affiliate. – Rappler.com

Gelo Gonzales

Gelo Gonzales is Rappler’s technology editor. He covers consumer electronics, social media, emerging tech, and video games.

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