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We're back - unexpected forums outage
Old 11-20-2009, 12:28 AM   #1
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We're back - unexpected forums outage

An exploit in our software was taken advantage of by some hackers who linked to a malicious site. It appears there was a little over 4 hours between the time it happened and the time we took the servers offline Thursday.

In an effort to minimize damage to the board we opted to shut everything down while we investigated the issue and formulated a game plan. Our team (server admins, programmers, and software vendors) coordinated and developed a plan to remove the malicious files and secure the servers. We believe that forum members should not have any system issues associated with this so long they didn't visit the malicious site AND install anything.

While the service interruption was unfortunate, it was important to us to make sure this issue was fully addressed before returning to business as usual. Protecting our community from this kind of intrusion is paramount and we'll post more info here as it becomes available. It's possible that we may need to continue tweak the forum setup and if so, we may have another service interruption.

We thank you for understanding
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Old 11-20-2009, 12:48 AM   #2
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Good to be back.
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Old 11-20-2009, 05:41 AM   #3
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Well handled- and appreciated the temporary posts as you moved through it. I hope you find the pranksters! And I hope they never get to FIRE
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Old 11-20-2009, 05:44 AM   #4
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It wasn't just this forum. I got the same offline message from the irv2.com forum I frequent. They seem to run similar forum software.

Aaaaah - I see they have the same Janet H community administrator!

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Old 11-20-2009, 06:16 AM   #5
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Audrey, if you look in the lower left corner of the page, you'll see the list of all of Andy's Social Knowledge forum communities. I believe all of them were involved with the hacking incident.
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Old 11-20-2009, 06:54 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janet H View Post
An exploit in our software was taken advantage of by some hackers who linked to a malicious site. It appears there was a little over 4 hours between the time it happened and the time we took the servers offline Thursday.

In an effort to minimize damage to the board we opted to shut everything down while we investigated the issue and formulated a game plan. Our team (server admins, programmers, and software vendors) coordinated and developed a plan to remove the malicious files and secure the servers. We believe that forum members should not have any system issues associated with this so long they didn't visit the malicious site AND install anything.

While the service interruption was unfortunate, it was important to us to make sure this issue was fully addressed before returning to business as usual. Protecting our community from this kind of intrusion is paramount and we'll post more info here as it becomes available. It's possible that we may need to continue tweak the forum setup and if so, we may have another service interruption.

We thank you for understanding
RATS! Foiled again...
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Old 11-20-2009, 07:36 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by bizlady View Post
Well handled- and appreciated the temporary posts as you moved through it. I hope you find the pranksters! And I hope they never get to FIRE
+1 it was really nice to get the feedback. It is appreciated. Without that, I might have gone around checking my bookmarks, wondering if I had something messed up on my end, wondering when I should check next, etc.

Small thing that makes a big difference.

Thanks - ERD50
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:02 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
+1 it was really nice to get the feedback. It is appreciated. Without that, I might have gone around checking my bookmarks, wondering if I had something messed up on my end, wondering when I should check next, etc.

Small thing that makes a big difference.

Thanks - ERD50

I agree. Well done.
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:17 AM   #9
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When I tried to go to the site yesterday late morning and got a Google warning that the site was unsafe, I knew something was up!

Coincidence that we had just been discussing what the Bunny might be up to lately? KIDDING!
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Old 11-20-2009, 09:09 AM   #10
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Anyone here a member on Whistlestopper Forum? I have been unable to accesses that forum for a week now. Could it be the same problem?
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Old 11-20-2009, 11:56 AM   #11
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A big thanks to all those involved in dealing with the break in. Putting up that temporary page with updates was excellent.

For me it was a whole evening without access to the Forum and I was starting to get the shakes, so it's good to see it back today.
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Old 11-20-2009, 12:01 PM   #12
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I agree. Good job on the communication. After a career in Megacorp computer security it was a nice change to see something besides denial and fingerpointing. Unless, of course, there WERE no Russian hackers...
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