1. Attacks on GM Watch!
2. Problems at GM Watch:
a) website problems!
b) e-mail/list problems!*
c) podcast problems!
*Anyone with a hotmail address needs to read this.
1. Attacks on GM Watch!
Seems the plug's just been pulled on our 'NGIN' website - http://www.ngin.org.uk. We have no idea why as yet and are trying to find out.
Most of you will be aware of how the plug was previously pulled on our GM Watch website http://www.gmwatch.org , when our web host was peppered with a series of legal threats.
Unfortunately, that hasn't been the only attack we've suffered of late. Almost exactly a year ago somebody hacked into the GM Watch and LobbyWatch websites (http://www.lobbywatch.org ) and comprehensively vandalised both.
We hoped that might have been just a random attack but then, almost as soon as we'd got the sites back online again, GM Watch started to be subjected to what are known as 'denial of service' attacks - attacks intended to make it difficult or impossible to access the site.
These cyber attacks were far from a passing phenomenon. They were repeated over and over again for almost a year until our web host recently made a series of changes to the underlying software for the GM Watch site.
Interestingly, immediately the denial of service attacks were successfully blocked, the site was hacked into again in an effort to once again delete all the content. Happily, this time - thanks to the new set-up - it was possible to counter the attack almost immediately and the site was only offline for a very short time.
Given the consistency of these attacks, and the fact that not one of the 300 or so other sites on the same server as GM Watch has been subjected to any vandalism or denial of service, it seems probable that someone is being paid to try and disable our site. Given other cyber shennanigans and black ops - some of which we've had a hand in exposing - this is perhaps not so surprising.
2. Problems at GM Watch!
a) website problems
While whoever's behind all these attacks has so far completely failed to keep our sites permanently offline or stop our listservs functioning, they have succeeded in making life difficult.
Because the initial site vandalism was so extensive, and our priority has been to keep the information flowing on our listservs, there are still pages on the GM Watch website that we've not had time to fully restore or where links are not operating - or at least not operating normally!
On top of that, the new software that has successfully blocked the denial of service attacks, has created problems of its own:
*certain pages on the site now have new urls, so existing links to these pages will no longer work - this includes some of our own links within the site itself!!!
* some existing pages currently display strangely, eg with duplicated text or links, or big spaces in strange places!
Just to add to the fun, on some pages in our news archive the new software seems to be making text sizes change somewhat randomly.
We hope to get all these problems ironed out eventually. In the meantime, thank you for your patience.
b. e-mail problems!
Just to add to the fun, we have e-mail problems affecting subscribers to our various lists with hotmail, msn and juno e-mail addresses.
This problem came about, we understand, because someone on the same server that our list mails go out from, but otherwise unconnected to us, had their e-mail account compromised and some inappropriate material was sent out to hotmail addresses. This seems to have led to a block being put by hotmail on all e-mails emanating from the same server, which is a bit of a disaster, not least as our web host seems to think the block is unlikely to be removed any time soon.
As a result, we've organized a way for non-list mails to be routed differently, to get around the block. But we haven't as yet worked out how to reroute our list mails.
So if you get to read this and you have one of the e-mail addresses affected, ie hotmail, msn and juno addresses, then please resubscribe with a different address if you possibly can, and normal service should then resume.
You can choose which list to subscribe to at
If you're affected but cannot resubscribe, then we hope we'll get round the current problem eventually, and in the meantime all the listmails get archived (currently with an entertaining array of text sizes!) on the website at http://www.gmwatch.org/archive.asp
c) podcast problems!
We have been so busy dealing with the high volume of news going into the daily, weekly and monthly lists - plus related problems! - that unfortunately we haven't found time to continue the GM Watch podcasts we began in 2006. Sorry about the discontinuity but we hope the podcasts may eventually get underway again, if on a more occasional basis.
Also, existing GM Watch podcasts that were streamed (for those with QuickTime) via the biotech indymedia site have become hard to find because of a change in their site url. The podcasts should still available though at the new url http://prod.biotech.indymedia.org/
Look out particularly for the one on studies on Bt cotton.
Let's keep fighting!