international intrigue

North Korea’s Internet Turned Off Today

Photo: Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images

Days after American officials pinned the blame for the Sony Pictures hack on reclusive North Korea, the country’s internet is down in what may be its worst outage in recent memory. The country has been offline for several hours, in what is increasingly suspected to be another attack. “Usually there are isolated blips, not continuous connectivity problems. I wouldn’t be surprised if they are absorbing some sort of attack presently,” Dyn Research director of internet analysis Doug Madory told CNN. He also said that it is “consistent with a DDoS attack on their routers.”

North Korea, meanwhile, maintains that it was not involved in the Sony breach. Despite these denials, President Obama promised Friday that the U.S. would respond to the Sony Pictures attack “proportionally,” but dismissed ideas that it was an act of war. Deputy State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf was asked about the incident Monday, to which she responded: “We are not going to discuss publicly operational details or comment on the reports, except that as we implement our responses, some will be seen and some may not be seen.”

Other Sony hack theories remain, too. Among them is the possibility that a disgruntled former employee is the mastermind behind these attacks, or that it was really China. And, of course, North Korea’s internet outage changes little for the vast majority of its citizens, who live in a dark black hole of dictatorship, and total separation from the outside world.

North Korea’s Internet Turned Off Today