New Zealand’s Internet Collapses After Netizens Rush To Access Illicit Content Of Celebrities

New Zealand’s internet users, keen to access naked photos of renowned celebrities, collapsed servers of the country’s main Internet Service Provider (ISP).

When internet users in New Zealand learnt that there were nude images of celebrities like Jenifer Lawrence, Avril Lavigne and Rihanna, they rushed to the links shared on social media. Unfortunately, these links were fake and were laced with malware. Unsuspecting users who hastily clicked on numerous ‘OK’ prompts had their systems crippled and compromised, which were further used to spread the attack. The resulting wave of such ‘zombie’ networks crashed the servers of the country’s primary internet service provider.

It took telecommunications giant Spark, the rebranded Telecom Corp., the entire weekend to fully recover from the attack and repair what it termed a “dynamic” cyber-attack that overloaded its system covering more than 600,000 customers, reported ABC News. Spark later tweeted it was aware that when people clicked on some links they inadvertently installed malware “generating a high amount of traffic to overseas sites”.

Computer security specialist Trend Micro noticed an unusual spike in data traffic and upon preliminary investigation issued an alert shortly before the attack propagated, warning not to open the links related to the nude celebrities. The advisory read,

“For obvious reasons, clicking on links to ‘naked celebrity’ photos, or opening email attachments would be a very bad idea right now, expect criminals to ride this bandwagon immediately. Our scanning brought to our attention some freshly-concocted schemes targeting those looking for the photos borne from the aforementioned leak.”

Trend Micro said users who clicked the link offering to show a video of the actress were directed to download a “video converter” that was actually malicious software, reported The Telegraph. So far, New Zealand’s internet security experts are clueless about who was behind the attack, but know that it didn’t originate from within the country. Typical aftermath of the attack involved Denial Of Service (DOS) attacks that were targeted towards Europe.

New Zealand’s internet users fell head-over-heals to the scam because of confirmed reports earlier which stated that kinky images of Jenifer Lawrence, Avril Lavigne and Rihanna had been successfully scourged from cloud storage servers. Hence internet users were well aware that there were ‘interesting’ images in the hands of a few enterprising individuals and it was only a matter of time before they ended up on the internet. But instead of laying their hands on the supposed images, New Zealanders ended up helping in propagation of one of the country’s biggest digital attacks.

[Image Credit | Getty/Rex]