Sunday, December 5, 2010

Wikileaks sites pop up over Europe

Wikileaks sites pop up over Europe - ZDNet

Wikileaks emerged on a Swiss internet domain as well as on domains in Germany, Finland, and the Netherlands, sidestepping a move that had in effect taken the controversial site off the internet.

The group, under heavy criticism in some quarters for publishing US diplomats' classified cables, has been working hard to keep operating amid distributed-denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks over the internet and Amazon's decision to stop hosting Wikileaks' website.

Meanwhile, Swedish authorities said they had re-submitted an international arrest warrant asking UK police to extradite WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange following sex crime allegations, according to the BBC. Assange, who is staying in a hidden location in England, has denied the allegations. The original arrest warrant issued last month was rejected on legal grounds.

A new problem with the Wikileaks site arose when stopped providing Wikileaks with Domain Name System (DNS) services. The DNS translates the web addresses that people type into the numeric Internet Protocol addresses that actually get the job done delivering data from one computer to another. When stopped the service, typing "" into a browser led nowhere.

In a statement on its website, said it terminated WikiLeaks' service to protect others using the service while Wikileaks was under the DDoS attack.

Anyone with Wikileaks's numeric internet address can get to the site without using the DNS, and Wikileaks offered instructions in a tweet: "WIKILEAKS: Free speech has a number:".

Later, it re-emerged with a more human-friendly internet address, also broadcast over Twitter: "Wikileaks moves to Switzerland" although that site remained inaccessible to some people who tried to view it, and said on its site that it had also cancelled Domain Name System services for the page.

The Swiss and German Pirate Party chapters purchased a host of alternative addresses for Wikileaks after Swiss services were terminated.

The Pirate Party of Germany said it purchased alternative service space to "ensure that press freedom in the form of Wikileaks maintained".

Wikileaks is available at and the Swiss Pirate Party has listed a further 21 additional alternative websites.

"About two hours after the deactivation of by we acquired a heap of redundant DNS servers … access should be possible from most places again," the party said in a statement.

Wikileaks announced on its Twitter page that the cables were accessible at, which is a German internet domain, in Finland and in The Netherlands.

Several groups not affiliated with Wikileaks also created mirrors of the site on their servers, which means copies of the site would remain up even if Wikileaks loses its domain name and hosting service. The hacker group 2600 created a mirror site at "" and another one is here. The 2600 Twitter account explained: "#wikileaks website stolen by authorities. we will point to backups and mirrors in solidarity for as long as necessary."

Meanwhile a group of Dutch journalists launched, a searchable index of all the cables that have been published.

After getting dumped by Amazon, Wikileaks took issue with the company's explanation that it terminated Wikileaks' service for violating Amazon's terms of service. Amazon said of its decision: "It's clear that Wikileaks doesn't own or otherwise control all the rights to this classified content. Further, it is not credible that the extraordinary volume of 250,000 classified documents that Wikileaks is publishing could have been carefully redacted in such a way as to ensure that they weren't putting innocent people in jeopardy."

Wikileaks doesn't buy it. "Amazon's press release does not accord with the facts on public record. It is one thing to be cowardly. Another to lie about it," Wikileaks tweeted.

Since Amazon dropped Wikileaks, a French company, OVH, has picked up some of the slack, much to the dismay of a French official, according to Reuters. The French Industry Minister wants to ban OVH from hosting the site, but OVH is seeking a court opinion arguing that it is legally a provider of technical services and not a host.

No comments:

Post a Comment