Tag Archive: cablegate

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At the precise time of writing (6.45pm GMT) the cablegate.wikileaks.org site is firmly unresponsive from its recent Amazon home, and a global DNS check shows that changes to its domain are currently propagating round the world – back to Bahnhof (RIPE check here).

imageBahnhof is the Swedish ISP originally heralded in the media as WikiLeaks’ chosen hosting partner some time ago, thanks in part to its futuristic press shots of nuclear bunkers and movie-set lighting.

MSNBC is speculating that it might be because Amazon has taken the decision to force the site off its services. Amazon has certainly had its fair share of press coverage this time round – definitely more than the last time it happened with the Warlogs. My blog alone has received quotes and trackbacks from the Wall Street Journal (twice), The Guardian, The Register, The Seattle Weekly, and Fox News – and there are countless other outlets covering the issue too.

Whilst it’s not unusual for WikiLeaks to keep moving their services, this is the first time their use of Amazon’s servers have had such a prolonged outage despite WikiLeaks’ own claims of a huge DDoS attack. Moving to another host directly as a result of downtime would suggest unresolvable problems at Amazon.

Considering no reports of outages at other Amazon-hosted sites are proliferating, you’d be forgiven for suspecting that this time it might just be personal.

Update: If this tweet from @SkyNewsBreak is to be believed, the US Dept of Homeland Security has confirmed that Amazon has agreed to stop hosting the content. The nature of the downtime would suggest that very little notice was given before the action was taken.

Update 2: WikiLeaks themselves just tweeted effective confirmation. Does this bring the saga to an end…?

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A month ago WikiLeaks added to their burgeoning notoriety by launching the controversial Iraq war logs. Completely by accident I noticed they were hosted on Amazon servers, in their Ireland and US datacentres, and blogged about it here.

The story got picked up by The Register, The Telegraph and then spread to various other places. Even Paul Mutton, the guy who blogs for NetCraft, picked up the trail and has been blogging about it since on the NetCraft.com homepage.

I thought it was a Big Deal – to me it seemed so odd, surely a mistake, to put this material not only on servers run by a US company, but physically on US soil – surely making it quite difficult to refute claims of illegality by the US authorities.

imageAnd then, tonight, they go and launch the ‘cablegate’ US Embassy logs – and it appears that to WikiLeaks using a US hosting company like Amazon isn’t a source of worry at all.

The new site, cablegate.wikileaks.org, is hosted on the same Octopuce and Amazon US IP addresses I reported last month. The wikileaks.org homepage is currently spread across two Amazon Ireland IP addresses.

I had thought that the slow removal of the Amazon servers over the past few weeks was demonstration of Amazon’s quiet refusal to host the material; I was evidently wrong. So much for the “Swedish bunkers”.