Korean Websites Under DDOS Attack

Malicious computer codes attacked the Web sites of South Korea’s presidential office and other major institutions on Friday, shutting down some of them temporarily, industry sources said.

The presidential office Cheong Wa Dae, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and top lender Kookmin Bank were among 29 institutions whose Web sites were hit by the so-called distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack that started from 10 a.m., AhnLab Inc. said in a statement.

Additional attacks are expected to begin at 6:30 p.m., targeting some 40 government and corporations’ Web sites, said AhnLab, South Korea’s top computer security company.

South Korea raised the cyber alert level following the DDoS attack, which disables access to servers and harms PC’s hard drives. The country’s telecommunications regulator Korea Communications Commission issued the third-highest alert.

The Web page of the Financial Services Commission, the country’s financial regulator, was briefly overloaded in the morning and an online stock trading system of a local brokerage was shut down for several minutes by the assault, officials said. They have recovered operation and no other damage was reported.

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