Saturday, June 28, 2014

Unprecedented internet attack

This morning I was posting an article to the Church and State website when the most unexpected and incredible thing happened: I lost access to Church and State and other sites I was using whilst remaining connected to the rest of the internet. The site I was using for my photos and captions (Bustle), the site I have an account with so I can upload photos and videos to my blogs (TinyPic), the site of my web hosting service provider (SiteGround), the site where I am publishing an ebook (Amazon's Kindle)... all gone! I made this video scarcely believing what I was witnessing:

I then made a second video with a voice over. At the end of the clip it is clear that I had access to this blog, but all the graphics were gone because TinyPic had been taken out:

My broadband provider is British Telecom (BT) and I can't stop thinking about Edward Snowden's revelation that Telecoms, internet providers, encryption and internet security companies are not only cooperating with the NSA and the UK Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) on a daily basis, but they are providing them with back doors into supposedly secure software. There is no other explanation for what I experienced: GCHQ has access to BT software and they are free to do what they want with no accountability.

Edward Snowden: Here's how we take back the Internet

It also so happens that according to BT's website, our property is the ONLY building on the entire street that is not eligible for fibre optic broadband (see Declan's latest email to our chairman in my blog of 19 June, "Now it's Newham Council, Thames Water, British Gas and British Telecom making our case for help and support from the Mayor of London's Greater London Authority"). What good luck!