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E-tailer: Defense is needed
February 10, 2000: 2:45 p.m. ET's CEO says company is aiding FBI in its probe of hacker incidents
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NEW YORK (CNNfn) - The CEO of Internet retailer said in a televised interview Thursday that he's not aware of any effective defense against the type of hacker attack that temporarily downed his company's site and several others this week.'s (BUYX: Research, Estimates) site was knocked out of service for about three hours on Tuesday by what is known as a "denial-of-service attack." The incident came on the same day that the Aliso Viejo, Calif.-based seller of books, computer hardware, software, videos, and other items sold $182 million of its stock in an initial public offering.
    "There is nothing that we see we can do to prevent these denial-of-service attacks,"'s CEO Gregory Hawkins said in a televised interview with CNNfn. Hawkins said earlier this week that is working with the company that hosts its Web sites, Exodus Communications Inc., to determine how the attack occurred.
    In a denial-of-service assault, a company's Web servers are hit with such a large number of bogus requests that they cannot provide information to the site's legitimate users. An analogy would be to coordinate an effort to saturate a road with so many cars that other vehicles couldn't get through. responded to Tuesday's attack by redirecting its Web traffic to other servers.
    Hawkins said during Thursday's interview that the company doesn't yet know who caused the attack, and that it has been cooperating with the FBI's investigation of the matter.
    Though Hawkins doesn't see any defense mechanisms against denial of service attacks, the stocks of several of the leading Internet security-related firms posted substantial gains Wednesday.
    As examples, Check Point Software (CHKP: Research, Estimates) rose 7-5/16 to 148, ISS Group (ISSX: Research, Estimates) jumped 7-7/8 to 81-3/4, RSA Security (RSAS: Research, Estimates) surged 10-23/32 to 63-23/32, and Axent Technologies (AXNT: Research, Estimates) jumped 5 to 28-1/4. Back to top


Hacks Spell $$$$ For Some - Feb. 9, 2000


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