Feeling the Western pressure and following a deal brokered by Germany, the blockade soon ended. Even though the embassy battle was lost, the internet war, which may have involved Nashi su, was just beginning.
The IW campaign against Estonia took on many forms. Some involved defacing Estonian websites, including replacing web pages and links with Russian propaganda. Most attacks though concentrated on shutting the sites down outright. By May 9th, when Russia and its allies commemorate the defeat of Nazi Germany in Red Square, at least six Estonian state websites were brought down. These included the foreign and justice ministries, as well as Estonian organizations, newspapers, and broadcasters.51 The main news outlet was forced to sever its international internet connections to stay online, effectively gagging the Estonian news services from telling the world about the attack on their country. Mission-critical computers, including all telephone exchanges, were also targeted. Estonia was very near a complete digital collapse on May 10th that would have shut off many vital services and caused massive, widespread social disruptions. Luckily Estonia’s Cyber Emergecy Response Team (“ECERT”) prevailed and Estonia avoided the worst case scenario that many feared all too likely. The Estonian Defense Minister, Jaak Aaviksoo, has argued that the cyber attacks amounted to a national security emergency likening the situation to a complete blockade, or “infblockade.” “This may well turn out to be a watershed in terms of widespread awareness of the vulnerability of modern society,” said Linton Wells II, the principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for networks and information integration at the Pentagon after the attack.52 But
52 Shaun Waterman, Who was behind Estonia’s cyber attack?, World Peace Herald, Jun. 11, 2007. Available at: . Last visited: 01/28/2008.