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FCC admits it was never actually hacked

2018-08-07 12:43 by
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FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said Monday that a high-profile outage of the agency's website last year wasn't caused by DDoS attacks as previously suggested, though he didn't offer an alternative explanation for the crash.

On May 7, 2017, the FCC's comment system crashed after Last Week Tonight host John Oliver encouraged his audience to post comments to the agency in support of net neutrality.

FCC officials initially said the site had been hit by a series of distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, which flood a website with useless traffic and cause it to slow down or crash. Net neutrality supporters accused the agency of making up the attack and blamed it for failing to keep the system online.

"The Inspector General Report tells us what we knew all along: the FCC's claim that it was the victim of a DDoS attack during the net neutrality proceeding is bogus," reads a statement from FCC commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel. "What happened instead is obvious—millions of Americans overwhelmed our online system because they wanted to tell us how important internet openness is to them and how distressed they were to see the FCC roll back their rights."

"With respect to the report's findings, I am deeply disappointed that the FCC's former Chief Information Officer (CIO), who was hired by the prior Administration and is no longer with the Commission, provided inaccurate information about this incident to me, my office, Congress, and the American people," FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in a statement. "This is completely unacceptable. I'm also disappointed that some working under the former CIO apparently either disagreed with the information that he was presenting or had questions about it, yet didn't feel comfortable communicating their concerns to me or my office."

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