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08.06.09

Bad Day for Twitter: Attack from Microsoft Windows Zombies, Texas Lawsuit Over Software Patents

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents, Security, Servers, Windows at 4:59 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Sparrow

Summary: Twitter downed by DDoS attacks from Windows botnets and sued by TechRadium over junk patents

Twitter is having some serious problems today. And yes, it’s true, Twitter runs on top of GNU/Linux, but when hit by massive botnets comprising Microsoft Windows zombies, there is not much Twitter can do other than improve filtering and balancing of load. As CNET put it:

As Symantec blogger Marian Merritt pointed out, “It’s often the case that D-DOS attacks come from computers infected with bots, turning them into Zombie computers doing their cybercriminal’s bidding. ”

With hundreds of millions of zombie PCs out there, a permanent solution is nowhere in sight. This may already be costing trillions, and more importantly it's costing lives.

Adding insult to injury, Twitter has just been sued and software patents are the culprit.

A Texas-based firm is suing the micro-blogging site Twitter, alleging that its three patents for a similar service are being infringed.

TechRadium’s system, called Iris, provides notification technology so that alerts can be sent to many users.

According to TechDirt, the plaintiff (complainant) does not qualify as a patent troll because there is actually a product.

This should hardly be a surprise, but with Twitter being so popular lately, it was only a matter of time until it was targeted in patent infringement lawsuits. At the very least, the company suing them appears to (a) actually be based in Texas and (b) have a product on the market. But… that doesn’t make TechRadium’s lawsuit against Twitter any more reasonable or sensible.

Not a good day for Twitter. Had Windows not been so easy to hijack and software patents (which Microsoft lobbies for) been beyond reach, then all those people who rely on micro-blogging would be a lot happier.

“Software patents are a huge potential threat to the ability of people to work together on open source. Making it easier for companies and communities that have patents to make those patents available in a common pool for people to use is one way to try to help developers deal with the threat.”

Linus Torvalds

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