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How the Internet Got Hijacked – For a While
A measly Nigerian ISP has hijacked internet traffic meant for Google’s data centers. The incident, called a BGP hijack, occurred last November 12, between 13:12 and 14:35, Pacific Time, according to Google. The incident was first detected and reported by an online service that monitors the routes that internet traffic takes through the smaller internet service provider (ISP) networks that make up the larger internet. The incident was caused by a small Nigerian ISP named MainOne Cable Company (AS37282), which announced to nearby ISPs that it was hosting IP addresses that were normally assigned to Google’s data center network. The Nigerian ISP incorrectly announced it was hosting 212 Google network prefixes in five different waves, for a total of 74 minutes. This bad routing announcement leaked downstream to other ISPs, causing more and more nearby providers to send Google-intended traffic to MainOne’s network, instead of the normal BGP routes. According to network security experts from a cloud security company, the path that this traffic took most often was one via TransTelecom (AS 20485) in Russia and China Telecom (AS 4809) in China.
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