GitHub Is Victim of Largest Recorded DDoS Attack

Today’s topics include GitHub being hit with the largest DDoS attack ever recorded; a congressional report detailing Russian social media meddling; Intel partnering with Tsinghua Unigroup on 3D NAND flash storage; and Zoho updating its CRM app with the Zia Voice assistant.

GitHub reported on March 1 that it was the victim of a distributed denial-of-service attack that peaked at 1.35 terabits per second, making it the largest DDoS attack publicly reported to date. The attack is part of the ongoing memcached amplification attacks reported by multiple service providers on Feb. 27.

GitHub said, "The attack originated from over a thousand different autonomous systems across tens of thousands of unique endpoints."

The attack came from misconfigured memcached servers that were amplifying traffic toward Akamai. After GitHub first identified the memcached DDoS attack, it moved its traffic to Akamai to deal with the volumetric attack. Four minutes after moving traffic to Akamai and eight minutes after the attack began, GitHub said the attack was mitigated.

A new staff report from the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology details Russian efforts to influence public opinion on hot button domestic issues in the U.S. related to energy use and production.

The report includes images from posts and advertising that ran on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, attempting to produce emotional responses on arguments for such issues as oil well fracking, the Dakota oil pipeline and even lithium mining for electric car batteries.

The Committee report charges that the Russian Internet Research Agency, based in St. Petersburg, used fake social media accounts to post the images and buy ads to draw traffic to the images and inflame opinions. According to the Committee staff, the Russian Internet Research Agency posted 9,097 posts or tweets about U.S. energy policy and used 4,334 accounts on social media.

Intel announced in January that it is discontinuing its partnership with Micron after completing the development of the third generation of 3D NAND flash storage. Instead, Intel is moving to a new 3D NAND flash storage partner—the relatively unknown Chinese company Tsinghua Unigroup, providing the company with its chips, according to the Nikkei Asian Review.

Tsinghua’s UNIC storage memory technology division will use the flash chips to create microSD cards and solid-state disks, which could help push UNIC to becoming a major market player alongside Samsung, Toshiba and Western Digital’s SanDisk.

The move could also help Intel gain better access to the Chinese market and raise the company’s current rank of sixth place globally among NAND memory chip manufacturers.

Zoho is providing those who use its mobile customer relationship management app with a digital personal assistant. Salespeople can now ask the app questions and Zoho’s Zia Voice digital assistant will respond. Zia Voice can also be used in text mode. Zia Voice leverages the Zoho CRM app, which analyzes a sales team’s interaction with clients, sales figures and spending trends.

Raju Vagesna, chief evangelist at Zoho, said, “It’s conversational in the sense that when you ask Zia Voice to do something she will go down the list of things she can do.”

The new Zia Voice lets salespeople simply ask the app questions like how much money a client spent with them during a specific period of time, what new leads does the salesperson have, and what is the best time to reach a client. Zia Voice is available as part of the Zoho CRM Enterprise Edition.