Ronan Price: Your PC could have helped bring down CAO
YOUR home computer could unwittingly have been one of those digital villains that brought the Central Applications Office (CAO) website to its knees yesterday.
The site was unavailable for several hours yesterday morning due to an increasingly common attack known as distributed denial of service -- or DDOS in hacker shorthand.
In short, hackers, often working for criminal gangs, force tens of thousands of computers around the world to continuously attempt to connect to a site. Overwhelmed by these fake requests, the website becomes unable to serve legitimate users trying to view the webpages.