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A case of mistaken identity lands one Canadian company in hot water regarding WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks took another hit recently when it lost the support of the domain name system provider that had been keeping the WikiLeaks.org domain name alive. The U.S.-based company, known as EveryDNS, had been providing the connection between the wikileaks.org domain name and the WikiLeaks servers, but it recently pulled the plug, following the likes of PayPal, Amazon, MasterCard, and Visa, which have all recently turned their backs on WikiLeaks.
Unfortunately, a number of publications mistakenly criticized the wrong domain name system provider. While EveryDNS was the company that dropped WikiLeaks, EasyDNS, a Toronto-based company, took the flak, the New York Times reported Monday morning.
The problem arose from a small but crucial typo. A number of publications, including the New York Times, the Financial Times, and the Guardian, among others, were posting headlines claiming that WikiLeaks had lost support from EasyDNS.net, rather than EveryDNS.
While EasyDNS CEO Mark Jeftovic attempted to contact the media companies who had made the mistake, Twitter was moving too fast for him to keep up with. “Twitter was the pulse of the whole thing,” Jeftovic told New York Times reporters. “I was really dreading getting up in the morning.”
Luckily for EasyDNS, the hacker group Anonymous, which recently overwhelmed PayPal, Mastercard, and Visa with a distributed denial of service attack, did not turn its nerd forces on the Canadian company. Last week, the group attempted an attack on Amazon, but could not get all of its “members” on the same page, so the Amazon attack morphed into an impromptu attack on PayPal.
Nevertheless, the Canadian company did get a lot of angry comments from ticked off customers.
In a bizarre attempt to win back his customers, Jeftovic opted to get directly involved in the controversy by agreeing to host three WikiLeaks domain names: wikileaks.org, wikileaks.ch, and wikileaks.nl. All three names will be hosted on special servers separate from the company’s servers. Jeftovic told Times reporters that his decision was precipitated by a meeting with an individual from outside of Canada who approached Jeftovic to discuss hosting the Wikileaks domain names.
Jeftovic now claims to receive more supportive emails than condemnatory emails, but now he is facing criticism from anti-Wikileaks customers, some of whom have even left the company.
Jeftovic explained to reporters that he finds it unusual that so many companies (referring to PayPal and ilk) felt the need “to pull the plug, close accounts and otherwise deny service to what is, in the absence of formal legal charges against them, a perfectly legal entity performing legal activities.”
He does not believe the case of mistaken identity will harm business, and in fact, he believes he may even benefit from the torrent of free publicity.
“There’s a minority who are saying ‘You’re a traitor to the U.S.’ — which is strange since I’m in Canada,” Jeftovic remarked.
Image source: turner.com
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