The recent attack on BBC website was conducted by a hacking group just to test their abilities to carry out a hacking attack. The hacking group named ‘New World Hacking’ has taken responsibility of hacking BBC website and putting it down for several hours using DDoS attack. The group of American hackers said that it wants to target Islamic State. The test was only to test their capabilities, according to a statement sent by the group to a BBC reporter.
BBC's technology correspondent, Rory Cellan-Jone received a message from the hacking group New World Hackers. The message said, “It was only a test, we didn't exactly plan to take it down for multiple hours.” Cellan-Jones posted the message on Twitter.
For few hours, BBC website and iPlayer network suffered an outage. DDoS attacks are not easy to mitigate as they are conducted from different locations. There are many specialized hosting services that claim to reduce the risk of DDoS attacks. Still, a many high traffic websites have suffered powerful DDoS attacks in recent times, crippling the service for hours.
In a typical DDoS attack, the servers are flooded with messages and traffic from multiple sources. This leads to slowdown of servers and ability to serve real traffic is impaired.
According to Variety report, "A member of the group — known as Ownz — told BBC reporter Leo Kelion that New World Hacking consisted of 12 people, eight men and four women. They formed the group in 2012. Their other activities have included a cyber attack on the Ku Klux Klan, and the #OpParis campaign to close IS social media accounts following the Paris terror attacks."
A denial-of-service attack is characterized by an explicit attempt by attackers to prevent legitimate users of a service from using that service. There are two general forms of DoS attacks: those that crash services and those that flood services.
The most serious attacks are distributed and in many or most cases involve forging of IP sender addresses (IP address spoofing) so that the location of the attacking machines cannot easily be identified, nor can filtering be done based on the source address.