Google outage pushed traffic through Russia, China and Nigeria

Google outage pushed traffic through Russia, China and Nigeria

"Everyone is pretty confident that nothing untoward took place", MainOne spokesman Tayo Ashiru said.

He said he suspected nation-state involvement because the traffic was effectively landing at state-run China Telecom. Sadly, while now in revision four, the standard comes with few protections: Routers with BGP enabled will accept any broadcast BGP messages by default, meaning that a properly-equipped attacker can - temporarily, at least - broadcast spurious BGP messages and reroute traffic without the AS owner's consent. It can arise either from misconfiguration - human error, essentially- or from a malicious action.

According to the Wall Street Journal, some Google services were "temporarily unreachable for some users after some traffic meant to reach the web giant was rerouted through other networks", though the company has not publicly disclosed whether it has determined the issue was a technical error or a hacking attempt.

Google told the Wall Street Journal that users' data was not compromised, adding that "and that the company has no reason to believe that the incident was malicious".

Toonk said that the route leak affected 212 unique Google prefixes.

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"This incident further underscores one of the fundamental weaknesses in the fabric of the Internet", says ThousandEyes' Ameet Naik. "If this could happen to a company with the scale and resources available that Google has, realize it could happen to anyone". Experts say it is fixable but that would require investments in encrypted routers that the industry has resisted. "However, this also put valuable Google traffic in the hands of ISPs in countries with a long history of Internet surveillance". But work was interrupted on services like G-Suite, which Google CEO Sundar Pichai in February said had more than 4 million businesses as customers.

Services from Google on Monday became unavailable for up to two hours as user traffic followed a tortuous path through operators in Russian Federation and Nigeria before hitting the Great Firewall of China. G-Suite and Google Cloud combined generate about $4 billion in revenue each year.

Indeed, the phenomenon has occurred before.

Google has acknowledged a connectivity issue earlier today that saw traffic destined for its Cloud platform end up at a Russian internet provider for over an hour, following an erroneous border gateway protocol routing advertisement. It sent all YouTube traffic into a virtual ditch in Pakistan. In April 2017, one affected MasterCard and Visa among other sites.

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