What Is Dyn, Inc.? A Cyber Attack On The Internet Provider Is Causing Massive Outages

For those who usually jump on Twitter or listen to some Spotify music first thing in the morning, there was some bad news — much of the internet, in effect, was broken. Massive internet outages across the globe occurred on Friday, Oct. 21, after a cyber attack on Dyn, Inc., which is one of the largest internet provider companies. Several go-to sites such as Twitter, Spotify, Etsy, and Reddit were affected by the hit, and likewise left many across the East Coast of the United States and across the world without internet access.

In essence, Dyn's job is to keep the internet running smoothly by ensuring that users end up at the right place. The company operates domain name servers, or DNS, which provide a basic directory to the internet. The DNS operates by making sure people are directed to the right site and are shown the correct information after typing in an address or being redirected to one through a link.

Without Dyn's DNS operating correctly, websites can be stopped from loading entirely. Though some users may be unaffected by the Dyn attacks, others — even those within the same areas of those same users — may not be able to access the sites at all. Cue some pretty wide-scale panic, as people's Twitter feeds shut down.

As can be seen from the map, the East Coast bore the brunt of the attack, but internet outages spanned all the way to the United Kingdom and beyond.

Thankfully, Scott Hilton, executive vice president of products at Dyn, told Bustle in a statement that things should be running normally again:

This morning, October 21, Dyn received a global DDoS attack on our Managed DNS infrastructure in the east coast of the United States. DNS traffic resolved from east coast name server locations are experiencing a service degradation or intermittent interruption during this time. We have been aggressively mitigating the DDoS attack against our infrastructure. Services have been restored to normal as of 13:20 UTC.

With those services restored to normal again, users should be able to get back on to the previously affected websites without any major problems. Hopefully, that will be the end of people's internet troubles for the day.