Hacks and Incidents

NZ spy agency suffers outage, backup also fails

NZ spy agency suffers outage, backup also fails: New Zealand’s signals intelligence and networks protection agency suffered potential embarrassment yesterday after its website went down for two hours, and its backup arrangements failed as well.

The Government Communications Security Bureau or GCSB is responsible for eavesdropping on communications in the Pacific and New Zealand as part of the “Five Eyes” or AUSCANNZUKUS agreement, and cooperates with the UK’s General Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) and the National Security Agency (NSA) of the United States.

Whereas other government sites are run by the State Services Commission, the gcsb.co.nz website is hosted by NZ commercial provider Discountdomains.

After Wednesday evening’s failure, the domain pointed to two United States IP addresses belonging to web host provider Incapsula in Denver, Colorado.

A domain name system (DNS) query done by iTnews at the time showed the GSCB site web address resolved to two IP addresses, 199.83.129.127 and 103.28.248.142.

However, as there were no websites configured on either IP address, an error message was displayed instead to visitors.

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