In our post recapping the “winners” and “losers” from last week’s 2016 “Republican” presidential primary, we didn’t hesitate to list ourselves in the latter category. That’s right … FITSNews.com had the shape of a big ol’ “L” on its forehead after being rocked by a massive cyberattack last week.
Even though the 2016 candidate we endorsed emerged victorious from the “First in the South” fracas, our website suffered a crippling blow during what should have been its busiest week ever.
First things first: We’re sorry readers couldn’t get their “FITS fix” during such an important week. We have a large, loyal following – and we feel absolutely terrible that their experience was interrupted by this malicious attack.
Rest assured we are doing everything we can to 1) clean up the mess, 2) initiate enhanced safety protocols to better protect the site moving forward, and 3) identify those responsible for the attack.
What exactly happened? Good question …
Here’s what we know: Someone who didn’t want our website up and running during the critical week leading up to the 2016 “First in the South” election initiated what’s known as an “injection attack” against us beginning late Saturday, February 13.
The result? Total chaos …
Yeah … brutal.
This sophisticated attack – which bounced internet protocol (IP) addresses off of at least five continents – brought FITSNews.com to its knees. As you can see from the screen caps above (a few samples of the literally hundreds of messages we received), the website was rendered virtually inaccessible due to a barrage of malware warnings.
Even when users attempted to bypass these warnings, they couldn’t … and in a few isolated cases certain users reported experiencing actual attacks on their computers after visiting the site.
FITSNews has been hit with cyber attacks before, but never anything like this.
This was powerful – and premeditated. Unfortunately, it was also extremely successfully in turning off this website’s microphone at the precise moment we were preparing to turn up the volume against the “Republican” establishment and its presidential candidates of choice. As a result, the lore of Palmetto political “dirty trickeration” has added a decidedly modern chapter.
Lee Atwater would be proud.
So … who did it? We have our suspicions, but given the level of sophistication associated with the incursion, we may never know for sure.
Of course there are some pretty interesting conspiracy theories out there …
“FitsNews pretending he was hacked is one of the most comical things to happen this primary season,” one of our commenters wrote recently.
Ha! That’s funny, actually.
Whoever took us down, they won this battle .. but not the war.
“I’m not going to stop … and the more you try to stop me, well, the more it validates what I’m doing,” our founding editor Will Folks wrote in the aftermath of the breach.
True that. We will emerge from this attack smarter, stronger and safer than ever before. In fact, this episode has forged in fire our founding editor’s relationships with two web warriors – the “Zen CIO” and “Hawaii 5-0” – intent on taking FITSNews.com to the next level.
In the meantime, though, we appreciate your support and patience as we navigate this most difficult chapter in our ongoing evolution as a new media outlet.