Everybody, who uses the Internet, is familiar with the problem: you need information of a web site urgently, want to make a booking or an online-purchase, but the required web site does not load. Common measures, such as restarting your computer or checking the WiFi connection, are not always successful, sometimes it also helps to wait for some time and then try again.
The scientists identified hundreds of popular web sites, which can be blocked for some seconds or even minutes by such a well-aimed HTTP request. These vulnerabilities could be used, e.g., by politically motivated attackers to reduce the availability of specific news web sites or by economically motivated attackers to make a competing web site unavailable.
The Center for Research in Security and Privacy, CRISP, is comprised of the Technische Universität Darmstadt with its CYSEC profile area for IT security research, the Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences, and the Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technology SIT and the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research IGD and is the biggest alliance of research institutes in the area of cybersecurity. About 450 scientists concern themselves with central issues of cybersecurity in society, economy and authorities. They consult the economy and public administration regularly, help company founders and prepare an expert opinion for political and economic use.