Aurich Lawson / Getty
A few dozen QAnon and 8chan-related websites went temporarily offline yesterday when a DDoS protection provider disabled access, according to an article by security reporter Brian Krebs.
The websites – with names like 8kun.net, 8kun.top, 8chan.se, and qanonbin.com – are connected to the Internet via the US ISP VanwaTech, which in turn "had a single point of failure". "Krebs wrote." The multitude of Internet addresses serving the various 8kun / QAnon sites have been protected from otherwise crippling and incessant Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks by CNServers LLC of Hillsboro, Oregon. "
That changed yesterday when security researcher Ron Guilmette called CNServers who apparently didn't know he was providing security protection for the sites. "Within minutes of that call, CNServers informed its client – Spartan Host Ltd., registered in Belfast, Northern Ireland – that it would no longer provide DDoS protection for the 254 Internet addresses that Spartan Host Routing has been doing for VanwaTech "wrote Krebs. Those 254 addresses included the few dozen related to QAnon and 8chan, now known as 8kun.
The websites did not stay offline for long as Spartan Host quickly "changed its settings to protect VanwaTech's Internet addresses from attack by ddos-guard (.) Net, a St. Petersburg, Russia-based company," wrote Krebs .
In 2019, Cloudflare dumped the "cesspool of hatred" 8chan
Although yesterday's outage didn't last long, it does illustrate the difficulty QAnon and 8chan-related websites have had in staying online. Facebook this month announced a ban on sites and groups associated with the QAnon conspiracy theorist group. QAnon sites "celebrate (d) and support (ed) violence" and contributed to other "forms of real harm, including recent claims that the west coast wildfires were started by certain groups that drew the attention of local officials from distracting from fighting the fires and protecting the public. "
The baseless QAnon conspiracy theory claims that Democratic politicians, Hollywood actors, and others are part of a satanic ring against President Trump.
8chan / 8kun "has been linked to white supremacism, neo-Nazism, anti-Semitism, and multiple mass shootings, and is known for hosting child pornography," noted Krebs. The primary 8chan website went offline in August 2019 when Cloudflare blocked access to CDN and DDoS protection services. It did so shortly after a suspected terrorist posted a screed on 8chan, just before 23 people were killed in an El Paso Walmart store. Matthew Prince, CEO of Cloudflare, said "8chan has repeatedly proven to be a dead end of hatred," with links to multiple shootings in addition to that of El Paso.
Three months later, 8chan reappeared on 8kun.net, but had problems staying online due to DDoS attacks. The page now contains little more than a link to 8kun.top, the current location of 8chan.
The host doesn't boot any websites, says this follows the law
Nick Lim, CEO of VanwaTech, defended his company's role in keeping 8kun websites online in November 2019, writing on Twitter: "I do what I do because I really believe in free speech and in protecting people from cyber security attacks to protect."
Spartan Host founder Ryan McCully told Krebs yesterday that he intended to keep VanwaTech as a customer. "We obey" the law of the country "when deciding what to take in, with a few exceptions to things that can cause resource problems, etc.," McCully told Cancer. "Just because we host something, it doesn't say anything about what we do or don't. Our opinions don't influence decisions about hosted content."