Dropbox hit by outage on Friday, denies that it was hacked

The file-sharing service says the outage Friday night was sparked by issues stemming from routine internal maintenance

Dropbox service returned Friday night, after an outage of several hours that the file-sharing service blamed on an issue that came up during regular maintenance. A social network post allegedly from a hacker group had claimed responsibility for the outage, but Dropbox dismissed claims that user info had been leaked as hoax.

Users trying access the Dropbox website from around 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. PT were redirected to a status page acknowledging the outage. "We are aware of an issue currently affecting the Dropbox site," a message posted on the site said. "We have identified the cause, which was the result of an issue that arose during routine internal maintenance, and are working to fix this as soon as possible."

The main page of the Dropbox site returned by 8 p.m. PT, but attempts to log in produced an error message.

Just after 8:30 p.m. PT, Dropbox posted via Twitter that service had been restored.

Those claims Dropbox referred to in its tweets came from the Twitter account of a group claiming to be affiliated with the Anonymous hacker movement says it took down the file-sharing service.

In subsequent tweets, the 1775 Sec posted what it claimed was a leak from its hack and said it had hacked Dropbox to mark the one-year anniversary of Aaron Swartz's suicide. Swartz, an Internet pioneer, killed himself January 11, 2013, while facing a variety of hacking charges over allegations that he removed millions of scholarly articles and documents from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Supporters of Swartz have since blamed the government's aggressive prosecution of the case for Swartz's suicide.

Before tweeting that restored service, Dropbox denied to several tech sites on Friday night that it had been hacked, again citing internal maintenance issues as the culprit.

It's not clear precisely how long Drobox's service had been out for, though the earliest tweets about the outage note indicate problems accessing the site around 5:45 p.m. PT.

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags AnonymousInternet-based applications and servicesdropboxsecurityProductivity & socialtwitterinternetfile sharing

More about DropboxMassachusetts Institute of TechnologyTechnology

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by PCWorld staff

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    IDG Live Webinar:The right collaboration strategy will help your business take flight

    Speakers - Mike Harris, Engineering Services Manager, Jetstar - Christopher Johnson, IT Director APAC, 20th Century Fox - Brent Maxwell, Director of Information Systems, THE ICONIC - IDG MC/Moderator Anthony Caruana

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts