Activision Blizzard gets hit by DDoS attack, an act of cyber strike?

Activision Blizzard get hit by DDoS attack, an act of cyber strike?

Activision Blizzard game titles have just been simultaneously hit with a DDoS attack, and this might be a form of a cyber attack on the company.

Activision Blizzard is making headlines recently, and it may be related to the recent DDoS attack, affecting four of its famed game titles—Overwatch, World of Warcraft, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Warzone. 

The attack happened just this Tuesday afternoon, and Forbes was first to report about this developing issue, noting that the attack isn’t “surprising anymore,” pointing out the mass street riots and “cyber attacks on popular online games.”

DDoS attack on Activision Blizzard AAA titles

The media outlet first noted that the servers for the two mentioned Call of Duty titles are down. An in-game alert popped up, saying, “We are currently experiencing a DDoS attack, which may result in high latency and disconnections for some players. We are actively working to mitigate this issue.”

Later on, it was found out that players in Overwatch and World of Warcraft also received the same in-game alert notification. The issue was then traced back to Blizzard’s Battle.net, the origin of the attack, with the mentioned games being receiving the impact.

What is a DDoS attack?

For those are not familiar with DDoS attack, it means “distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack,” per Norton.

Symantec’s anti-virus program identifies DDoS attack as a “powerful weapon on the internet,” among others. When programs get hit by this, it reportedly means that hackers have attempted to infiltrate by “flooding or crashing the website with too much traffic.”

Based on what we learned from the Epic Games Store GTA 5 server fiasco, when there’s too much flood of traffic, servers will eventually drown, therefore failing. A DDoS attack aims to overwhelm its server making its services inoperable.

Per the anti-virus software’s website, this attack can be combined with an extortion threat, similar to what Armada Collective did in 2015 and 2016.

Why target Activision Blizzard?

There hasn’t been any official news from the gaming giant as to the reason behind the issue. So, it isn’t quite clear if the DDoS attack was a form of a cyber strike or just a simple error within its servers.

It might be important to note that Activision Blizzard is currently trending right now, as other media outlets identify the Call of Duty makers as a “hypocrite” after showing its support to the Black Lives Matter movement recently.

Micky News previously reported that Activision chose to delay its new season premieres for its Call of Duty: Mobile, Warzone, and Modern Warfare as a form of gesture to support the U.S. protests.

However, the Twitterverse is reportedly calling out the company for its “double standards.”

The issue dates back in October when Blizzard reportedly banned a Hearthstone pro player by the name of Ng “Blitzchung” Wai Chung after showing its support for the Hong Kong protests.

 

After receiving quite the backlash, Blizzard did apologize to its community. But, they technically did not lift the ban on the pro player, but instead only reduced it from 1 year to six months.

The players are yet to hear from Activision Blizzard for any news update. Nevertheless, Forbes notes that players are now slowly able to get back in their respective games.

 

Featured image courtesy of Tarcil Tarcil/Flickr

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