Israeli computer system administrators and
security experts were bracing themselves Friday for an assault by
pro-Palestinian hackers, who have vowed to disable Israeli websites
The hackers, who claim to belong to the Anonymous group, threatened to "erase Israel from the Internet" on April 7, the eve of the Jewish state's Holocaust Memorial Day.
They boast that their attempt will be the largest online assault ever on any single country in history.
Although the assault appears to be aimed at government, bank, academic, and business websites, the Israel Internet Association said it will operate a hotline for people to report attacks, and will update its website continuously with status reports.
It also published guidelines on its website advising Israeli internet users how to prepare for, and protect themselves against, the possible assault.
These include changing passwords, updating anti-virus software, and not opening suspicious links, attachments, or documents.
Lior Tabansky, of Tel Aviv University's Workshop for Science, Technology, and Security, told the Times of Israel daily that the expected attacks, although serious, are merely "business as usual" for hackers, who he said target Israel, usually unsuccessfully, on a daily basis.
"The really important sites are protected from the public Internet, and the chances that the hackers can penetrate them are next to nothing," he said.
Tabanskly believed the hackers would launch a massive denial of service (DDOS) attack, hoping to slow, and then halt, Israeli internet servers.
"Unless they have names and passwords, that is really their only attack strategy," he said.
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