— Mikko Hypponen (@mikko) April 27, 2015
Facebook has long been banned in China, but it’s unclear why China would be attacking seemingly unrelated websites. Thousands of websites around the world that are in no way related to Facebook use its login mechanism for the convenience of users. The sites that users are being redirected to are wpgk.org, an open-source software deployment site, and ptraverler.com, a Polish couple’s travel blog.
It’s likely that this is some sort of beta test for a larger and more sophisticated attack that would involve spoofing user data. As Facebook has been banned in China for years, and most expats in-country use a VPN (which was not affected) to access it. And any website that uses the Facebook Connect function would be Western oriented, creating a real niche within the country.
Regardless, it will be interesting to see if China will continue to weaponize the Great Firewall and what the West will do about it. This is offensive cyberwarfare on the part of China, and now it’s up to the West to see the extent of their tolerance for it.