Bobbear is a British website designed to inform the community about websites set up by gangs stealing money from innocent internet users through email scams and money mule operations. You can normally reach it at www.bobbear.co.uk - but if you try and do that today you'll probably discover that you can't get through.
Bob Harrison, the administrator of the Bobbear website, got in touch with me this weekend to tell me that his site was under fire from a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack using compromised botnet computers around the world. The botnet is bombarding Bob's website with traffic, effectively blasting it off the internet and making it impossible for legitimate visitors to reach the site.
According to Bob, the botnet is "huge" with "over half a million recorded zombie hits from midnight to 8am today."
This isn't the first time that the Bobbear website has been attacked by the very criminals it tries to educate the public about. In October last year, hackers attempted to tarnish BobBear's reputation by asking for money to be donated to the website via online payment service e-Gold.
An attack like this is unfortunate news for the internet community, as it disrupts the dissemination of hundreds of pages of warnings about email frauds archived by Bob over the years. The only consolation that Bobbear can take is that they must be having an impact on the fraudsters if they are prepared to launch an attack like this.