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Dear TIWWA members and visitors,
Nothing to be alarmed about, but I would like to extend apologies for any inconvenience you may have experienced with slow responses or speed with the website in the last few days.
Unfortunately we have intermittently been receiving a high amount of illegitimate web traffic, effectively hammering away at the server in what appears to be a crude attempt to knock our server or website offline.
As you may know such is the nature of DDoS or 'Distributed Denial of Service' attacks, the hackers (possibly someone who has watched too many episode of Mr Robot) often use a one or more, sometimes a whole network of compromised computers or devices to try and take random or specific servers down by bombarding their firewall and server software with traffic or hits.
Initially it was coming from Italy, then the US, then South America.
We can manually kill off the Apache server process each time and restart it, but after a while it starts up again, sometimes soon or after a few hours. Eventually they will get bored with door rattling and move on, especially since we're not a big company website, power station etc.
Our web-hosting company has elevated the issue to a more senior tier of support staff who have been working hard to resolve the issues, however we may start using Cloudflare and routing through their network behind the scenes for extra protection, as they provide a network service to assist with this sort of issue. If so, the website may be inaccessible for a short while.
We may also have to enable additional firewall rules, which potentially could cause you to receive a blocked or forbidden error messages in your browser if your use or visit to the site triggers a false positive. Such advanced rules are very sensitive, and require a lot of fine tuning and extra time to configure, so are best avoided if possible.
I want to reassure you that we have no reason to believe the website or server has been compromised or hacked in any way, or personal information taken.
We take security seriously. We also have automatic backups available, and all non-public user account related personal information such as e-mail addresses, passwords etc are fully encrypted, as you would rightly expect. This is one reason why we licence use of professional community software with regular updates rather than use free software, and we also automatically encrypt all traffic between our server and your browser when you visit our site.
Thank you bearing with us.
Any UK based group members fancy meeting up when Lance is in London this July? http://www.londonfilmandcomiccon.com/index.php/9-lfcc-guests/london-guests-filmandtv/1001-lance-henriksen
Would be nice to put faces to names!
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