, the site that hosts the popular LGBTQ political blog "The
Bilerico Project," was attacked this week by a group of
Eastern European hackers who have been attempting to shut down
the site for the past year and a half.
According to Bil
Browning, the blog's co-owner and editor in chief, problems
first started after the feminist blog
moved to Bilerico's server almost two years ago for protection
from the same group of hackers. The move brought the Bilerico
site to the hackers' attention and, even though Shakespeare's
Sister has since moved servers again, the hackers have been
relentlessly attacking the site ever since.
"Most of the time,"
Browning explains, "they only get in for a few minutes and
then we catch them. This time we were bombarded in the middle
of the night, and by the time we caught on, it was too
The site was down
completely for over nine hours and, even now, while the site is
at least up and visible, a technical crew will have to spend
the next several days combing through the site's archives,
looking for any traces of the hacking that remain.
"What is unusual, and
maybe most disturbing," Browning noted, "is that they
didn't leave messages on the front of the site, as most hackers
do. They just took us down completely. They left no opinion, no
discussion, nothing for the world to see. A coworker even
referred to it as an 'Internet hate crime.'"
Browning put a note on
The Bilerico Project's Facebook page to alert any fans of the
site about what happened. The response so far, according to
Browning, has been overwhelming.
"I've been inundated
with e-mails and just hundreds of Facebook messages," said
Browning. "One message even read, 'Here's another gay techie.
I'm yours. I'll take the day off work.' For someone to leave
his paying job for a day to help us, that's just
As The Bilerico Project
works to rebuild and repair after this attack, support from
readers such as the "gay techie" has been heartening and is
greatly appreciated by the Bilerico team. The hackers' attempts
to thwart the political site may have worked for a few hours,
but clearly, an outside attack only serves to strengthen the
resolve of the community.
The Bilerico Project's
site has the best possible protections in place to ward
off attacks such as this -- an indication of just how
sophisticated and determined this particular hacking group
concluded Browning, "because U.S. law says we can't legally
do a damn thing."