WHITE HOUSE Web site attacked

Saturday, May 5th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Hackers attacked the White House Web site Friday, resulting in massive slowdowns, said the Bush administration and a company that monitors the Internet.

The perpetrators sent an enormous amount of data toward the White House site, leaving it completely blocked or difficult to access for about six hours. The White House said no information on the site was altered or destroyed.

The connection between the White House's Internet service provider and www.whitehouse.gov became clogged with data in what is commonly called a ``denial of service attack,'' said Jimmy Orr of the White House media affairs office.

``We're not going to speculate as to where it came from, but it's something ... we're looking at,'' said Orr.

Keynote Systems of San Mateo, Calif., a company that monitors Web site performance, said that around 4 a.m. the site began experiencing problems, which lasted for about six hours.

The attack is similar to the February 2000 assaults on popular Web sites such as CNN.com and eBay that effectively shut them down.

Keynote Systems said the publicly accessible CIA Web site experienced a similar attack on Tuesday, though the site never appeared to be completely blocked.

CIA spokesman Mark Mansfield acknowledged Friday that there was a denial-of-service attack on Tuesday, but said the agency is frequently attacked in that fashion. The agency Web site was not defaced or hacked into, Mansfield said, and no classified systems were attacked.

Last weekend, hackers who federal officials believe are from China vandalized Web sites operated by the departments of Labor and Health and Human Services.

A picture of Wang Wei, the Chinese pilot who was killed in a collision with a U.S. Navy spy plane April 1, was posted on Labor's Web site.