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Defacement archive Zone-h mulls closure

Vote marred by suspected botnet interference

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Defacement archive Zone-h has put its very existence to the vote.

The security site picked up the baton after previous defacement archive Alldas packed up shop. It currently hosts about 2.6 million defacements after six years chronicling the activities of hackers.

According to Zone-h, its work has allowed it to understand trends in computer security such as the move towards web application attacks. Zone-h also claims (with some justification) to have been among the first to report on the rise of politically-motivated hacking from the Muslim world and the decrease of defacement attacks originating from Brazil, as hackers from the South American country moved onto profit-making cybercrime activities.

Much of the news written about the defacement scene focuses on whether Windows or Linux servers are getting hit, but Zone-h reckons this debate has become irrelevant.

On the downside, many defacers have started to use Zone-h as an informal ranking board. It is also hard work to maintain and the sometime target of ill-feeling from those whose foibles have been disclosed in public, as well as the occasional target of denial of service attacks.

So the site has decided to run a poll on whether it ought to continue mirroring defacements. The vote is currently running 70-30 against continuing Zone-h, at least according to raw voting statistics.

The vote is swinging in the opposite direction to the sentiments expressed by those leaving comments on a post about the poll - raising the possibility that a voting botnet is in play, writes Zone-h founder Roberto Preatoni in an addendum to the article on the vote here.

Even if Zone-h does decide to call it quits, other sites will probably come along to pick up where it left off. It's a dirty job, but someone is likely to come in and plug the gap - as happened when Safemode, Attrition, and Alldas quit the defacement archive scene in years past. ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

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