Tumblr Hacked…Again


Alice Yang, Staff Writer

Tumblr, one of the United States’ most popular blogging websites, was targeted by hackers during the afternoon of December 21st. For roughly two hours, users were left unable to access the page and were instead greeted with a white screen bearing the words, “This site can’t be reached.” Since then, a group of hackers known as the R.I.U. Star Patrol has claimed responsibility.

R.I.U. Star Patrol is a relatively new body of people who have risen from the ashes of Lizard Squad, a notorious hacker group whose notable actions include taking down the internet in North Korea and redirecting users to a page with a picture of a tuxedo-wearing lizard when they clicked on the Malaysia Airlines website. R.I.U. Star Patrol slowly rose to fame through DDoS attacks. These assaults occur when the perpetrator makes a machine or network unavailable to its audience by disrupting services of a host connected to the internet. In this case, the host was Tumblr. Usually, this was done by flooding the system with more traffic than the website can handle, rendering it unavailable to the intended audience.

Displeased and frustrated users took to Twitter to complain about the mishap. What’s surprising, however, is that Tumblr removed all tweets when the service was restored. The company’s refusal to acknowledge the incident may lead to repercussions in the future when longer attacks could be launched against the service.

However, Tumblr is not the only network targeted by this particular group of hackers. Just recently before the holidays, they have issued a threat to knock both Xbox Live and Sony’s PlayStation Network offline on Christmas Day. Despite this threat, Tumblr users can rest easy as R.I.U. Star Patrol said that “there is no sinister motive,” when asked for the cause of the attacks; they simply claimed it to be light hearted fun. There were no malicious links posted nor were there any information stolen. They even went on to say that they are only motivated by none other than “the lulz.”
This was not the first time Tumblr has been hacked. It has been attacked numerous times, including the one in 2013, where a data breach resulted in 65 million passwords stolen, making it the third biggest security breach ever. Tumblr has reportedly upped their defenses to hackers since then, but they were still subject to the attack by R.I.U. Star Patrol. This then leaves us with one question: When will Tumblr be hacked next?