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WorldPay struggles under DDoS attack (again)

Systems safe but running at a crawl

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WorldPay, the Royal Bank of Scotland's internet payment transaction outfit, is continuing to fight a sustained internet attack which has left its services largely unavailable for a third successive day.

Since Saturday (2 October), WorldPay's online payment and administration system has been reduced to a crawl, due to a malicious DDoS attack by unidentified computer criminals. A spokesman for the company stressed that although is fighting a serious "denial-of-service" attack, its systems is uncompromised and customer data remains secure. "We are processing transactions securely but the attack is blocking our ability to operate normally. We apologise unreservedly for any inconvenience caused," he added. WorldPay's techies are working overtime to restore service but can't say when normal service will be restored.

In a notice to customers on Saturday (2 October), WorldPay said: "We regret that access to our payment and administration systems is severely disrupted due to a planned and large scale Denial of Service (DDOS) attack by a third party. Our payment and administration systems are working, safe and secure, but the networks around them are being flooded with requests on a huge scale, causing 'service denials'. We are processing payments, but far slower and fewer than we normally would.

"We are executing our contingency plans to move to full restoration of the service but cannot at this point in time predict when all customers will have the service restored without further interruption. While attacks of this type can be anticipated, it does take time to identify and deal with the exact nature of a particular attack. We are doing everything that is possible to restore a full service as soon as is possible," it added.

Users are advised to check WorldPay's customer service portal for updates. WorldPay was the subject of a similar three-day long denial of service attack last November.

One Reg reader writes: "Looks like they have not learned much from last year/s dos attack as the service has been down for most of the day. We have lost thousands in orders."

A WorldPay spokesman said the vast majority of customers had been supportive and understanding. He noted that many businesses had experienced DDoS attacks in recent months. Many of these attacks have been linked to extortion attempts, but WorldPay declines to say if it has received any demands from its attackers. ®

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