Australian Census Website Shut Down On Census Night After 4 DDoS Attacks

Heart44 writes: News sites are reporting that the Australian census website has been shut down until further notice. This happened on census night, Tuesday (Australian time), August 9th, 2016. This is the first attempt at an online census where [the internet] is the default data collection method. You had to call an often busy number to get a paper form. This is on top of a long running controversy that the Australian Bureau of Statistics will keep the names and addresses of everyone for five years. I presume more useful links will appear over time. “The site was targeted by four denial of service (DoS) attacks,” chief statistician David Kalisch told ABC radio. The Sydney Morning Herald reports: “The first three caused minor disruptions and did not stop more than two million census forms from being ‘successfully submitted and safely stored,’ he said. But the site was shut down after a ‘gap’ in the system’s security measures was found during a fourth attack (AEST), Mr Kalisch said. ‘After the fourth attack, which took place just after 7:30pm [on Tuesday AEST], the ABS took the precaution of closing down the system to ensure the integrity of the data,’ Mr Kalisch said. ‘I can certainly reassure Australians the data they provided is safe,’ he said.”

UPDATE 8/09/16: Many reports are contradicting Kalisch’s claim that the website was shut down from DDoS attacks. User @mhackling on Twitter tweeted a screenshot of Digital Attack Map showing “nothing unusual DDoS wise for Australia and yesterday.”


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