Cablegate, server crashes light up WikiLeaks over holiday weekend

cablegate server crashes light up wikileaks over holiday weekend urlMost people were worried about popular online retailers like Amazon and eBay crashing over the holiday shopping weekend, but turns out the real target was WikiLeaks.

The site has been in hot water ever since its launch in 2006, but has specifically seen harsh scrutiny from the federal government in the last year. After releasing the “Afghan War Diaries,” the Pentagon demanded WikiLeaks return the documents and remove them from the site, both things it refused to do.

WikiLeaks has stood by its claims of free speech and government transparency, now more than ever. About a month ago, the site was responsible for the largest release of “The Iraq War Logs,” 391,832 documents that accounted for the largest military leak ever. The move incited US government officials, but not nearly as much as its latest leak. This weekend the site released secret US embassy cables dating back to 1966 that provide an in-depth look at US-foreign relations. The federal government has argued that at the least, this sensitive information could be embarrassing, and at most, threatening to the country’s international relations.

But shortly before the site officially leaked the documents, it was subjected to a DDoS attack, shutting the server down. There was speculation the US government had created the system error itself, but it’s now being widely reported that a hacker known as th3j35t3r (or “the jester”) was responsible. His Twitter feed often reports his hacks (which he claims are to thwart terrorists and “other general bad guys”), and this Sunday linked to WikiLeaks’ downed page and said “for attempting to endanger the lives of our troops, ‘other assets’ & foreign relations.”

Whether or not The Jester is actually solely responsible for crashing the site is a non-issue at this point. WikiLeaks’ site is up and running,  the information in the recent document has already been given to several publications, and the State department is in damage-control mode.

And while many details concerning the truth of the documents are being debated, one rumor that’s caught the public’s attention is the possible confirmation behind a Chinese government attack on Google. Last year, Google was victim to a massive hack, and fingers were pointed at China after Gmail servers noticed a significant amount of Chinese dissidents’ accounts had been tampered with. The Sunday WikiLeaks leak reported Chinese confirmation of the Internet intrusion.

Google’s relationship with China has been stormy at best, and this new revelation will probably further complicate matters. But there are bigger concerns on hand, mostly between the US government and WikiLeaks’ impact. And the sites’ contributors should be worried, as the Pirate Bay founders were sentenced on Friday. It seems like any tolerance WikiLeaks has been granted is quickly disintegrating.

Computing

Supermicro investigation: no spy chips found on our motherboards

Supermicro announced the results of an investigation into the controversy surrounding its motherboards. The investigation was launched in response to reports that alleged the motherboards were compromised with malicious hardware.
Social Media

#ThrowbackThursday is only the start: Instagram hashtags for every day of the week

Not getting your hashtag fill with #ThrowbackThursday or #ManCrushMonday? Here's a list of some of the more popular Instagram hashtags, so you can outfit your next post with the proper tag, regardless of what day it is.
Business

Chinese court upholds Qualcomm's complaint that Apple infringed on two patents

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in December, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to endangered cats

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.
Computing

Is your PC slow? Here's how to restore Windows 10 to factory settings

Computers rarely work as well after they accumulate files and misconfigure settings. Thankfully, with this guide, you'll be able to restore your PC to its original state by learning how to factory reset Windows.
Computing

The Titan RTX graphics card is nearly here. Here's what you need to know

The Nvidia Titan RTX is arguably the most powerful consumer graphics card ever made, even if it's not really aimed at consumers. It bridges the 2080 Ti and RTX Quadro cards with boat loads of power.
Computing

Leak reveals that Nvidia’s RTX 2060 gaming chipsets will be headed to laptops

The latest leaks of Nvidia's upcoming RTX 2060 have given performance benchmarks and further detail about the future chipset and its capabilities, while a RTX 2060 Max-Q variant has also been discovered for thin and light gaming machines.
Computing

Looking for an Apple MacBook below $900? Woot has you covered

If you're looking for a great deal on an Apple MacBook, then Amazon's Woot may just have what you have been seeking. It has Macbooks available for only $810 with Intel M3 CPUs, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB SSDs.
Computing

Want to save a webpage as a PDF? Just follow these steps

Need to quickly save and share a webpage? The best way is to learn how to save a webpage as a PDF file, as they're fully featured and can handle images and text with ease. Here's how.
Computing

New rumors say the Pixelbook 2 could show up at CES 2019

What will the Pixelbook 2 be like? Google hasn't announced it, but thanks to rumors and leaks, we think we have a pretty good idea of what the potential new flagship Chromebook will be like.
Computing

A dead pixel doesn't mean a dead display. Here's how to repair it

Dead pixel got you down? We don't blame you. Check out our guide on how to fix a dead pixel and save yourself that costly screen replacement or an unwanted trip to your local repair shop.
Computing

You could spend $1,000 on an iPhone, or buy one of these awesome laptops instead

Finding a decent laptop is easy, but finding one under $1,000 is a bit tricky. Luckily, we've taken some of the guesswork out of picking out a budget laptop. Here are some of our favorites, the best laptops under $1,000.
Computing

Don't know what to do with all your old DVDs? Here's how to convert them to MP4

Given today's rapid technological advancements, physical discs are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Check out our guide on how to convert a DVD to MP4, so you can ditch discs for digital files.
Computing

Here’s how to install Windows on a Chromebook

If you want to push the functionality of your new Chromebook to another level, and Linux isn't really your deal, you can try installing Windows on a Chromebook. Here's how to do so, just in case you're looking to nab some Windows-only…