Has Labour Really Been Hit By “Large-Scale and Sophisticated” Cyber Attack?

Last night Michael Crick spotted Labour’s centralised candidate leaflet generator had been failing for some hours, preventing PPCs from sorting out their election literature. The error message last night was:

Today was the deadline for Labour CLPs to get their freepost printing done. Could it be that a last-minute scramble has overwhelmed Labour’s servers? Overnight this has somehow mutated into a “sophisticated and large-scale cyber attack” on its digital platforms. True a lot of people logging on can seem like a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack or it could just be a lot of people trying to log on before the deadline. Guido is betting on the latter…

Labour have just put out a press release claiming:

Yesterday afternoon our security systems identified that, in a very short period of time, there were large-scale and sophisticated attacks on Labour Party platforms which had the intention of taking our systems entirely offline. Every single one of these attempts failed due to our robust security systems and the integrity of all our platforms and data was maintained.

From the party that wants to nationalise Greggs, comes ‘we can’t run a centrally operated leaflet making website effectively’. Bets on how long it takes for them to blame Russia…

UPDATE: The National Cyber Security Centre says meh

UPDATE II: Seven Labour incumbent candidates, plus Paul Mason, have now claimed this attack was caused by foreign interference despite the NCSC effectively rejecting such a conspiracy


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Quote of the Day

Dr Alexander Kogan, the app developer who originally harvested the Facebook data, said…

“I think what Cambridge Analytica has tried to sell is magic and made claims this is incredibly accurate and it tells you everything there is to tell about you. But I think the reality is it’s not that. If you sit down and you really work through the statistics and you think what does a correlation of point three means, those claims quickly fall apart. And that’s something any person with a statistical background can go and do.”

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