The day after the New York Times ran a scathing story attacking the Clinton Foundation the corporate and media sites of the newspaper experienced a lengthy outage that a source close to the situation said appeared to be a cyber attack.
The source, who asked not to be identified because of the sensitive nature of the incident, told Fox News that the outage began around 11:30 ET and service was not restored until around 1 p.m. ET. The source went on to say the paper had begun huddling with outside security experts in order to properly access the threat.
The New York Times said on its official twitter account that the company was “experiencing a server issue that has resulted in our e-mail and Web site being unavailable.”
Later the paper went on to say that the problem was not the result of a cyber attack but was instead an “internal issue” related to “a failure during regular maintenance on NYTimes.com and not the result of a cyber attack.”
However, the company has been the subject of attacks by Chinese hackers in the past prompting Cedric Leighton, a former National Security Agency official told Fox that “My suspicion leads me to believe that this is not really an internal issue. This is something that goes way beyond that.”
He went on to say it was “very rare” for an internal issue to cause this kind of damage, however he did admit that it would be possible for a person who had internal access to the paper’s systems “could have planted malicious code.”
While it is not clear who may have been behind the attack, it is noteworthy that the attack came a day after the left leaning paper did a scathing editorial on the Clinton Foundation and its questionable use of funds. The Times said:
“For all of its successes, the Clinton Foundation had become a sprawling concern, supervised by a rotating board of old Clinton hands, vulnerable to distraction and threatened by conflicts of interest. It ran multimillion-dollar deficits for several years, despite vast amounts of money flowing in.”
The piece was such a departure for the New York Times, which has gone out of its way to provide cover for liberal politicians such as former President Bill Clinton and Barack Obama that The Telegraph in England questioned whether the paper had been co-opted by conservative talk show radio giant Rush Limbaugh.
“Is the New York Times being guest edited by Rush Limbaugh?” the Telegraph said.
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