Anti-piracy group hit by DDoS attack, Usenet users blamed

Dutch entertainment trade organization and antipiracy advocate BREIN was hit early this week by major DDoS attack that rendered the group’s website inaccessible from late Monday and through the day on Tuesday. Though the organization has made plenty of enemies throughout their years of harassing file-sharing websites, those in charge already believe they know who was behind the attacks.

Anti-piracy group hit by DDoS attack, Usenet users blamed

“Supporters of FTD are probably behind the attack,” BREIN president Tim Kuik told the media. “We think that because the timing of the closing of FTD and the beginning of the attack exactly coincide.”

Indeed, the fate of Usenet website FTD was sealed last month in a Dutch court after a nearly 2-year long legal battle that FTD began in order to have their operations declared legal. Though the 450,000-member community did not host any infringing content on its own servers, the landmark decision ruled that the mere communication of where to download illegally shared files was enough to convince the court to shut them down.

The defendant in that case was, of course, FTD’s greatest critic, BREIN.

Though the DDoS attack coincided with the closure of FTD, their lawyer, Arnoud Engelfriet, told TorrentFreak that those who ran the Usenet site were not in favor of the action.

“FTD deplores the DDoS attack as this isn’t the way to fight BREIN,” Engelfriet stated. “Executing DDoS attacks only strengthens the image that filesharing or downloading is a criminal activity, which does not help the cause.”

BREIN has been at least partially responsible for the closure of over 40 websites just in the past 90 days. In December, the group teamed up with the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) to seize 29 US-hosted domains, and in January the two groups teamed up once again to take down 12 torrent sites.

While we may never know if it truly was scorned FTD members behind the DDoS attacks, one certainty is that this was not the first attack against BREIN, and it likely won’t be the last.