The Federal Communications Commission came clean on Monday and admitted that it did not actually suffer a DDoS “attack” in May 2017. According to PC Mag, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said the former agency chief information officer David Bray gave false information last year when he told the media that the FCC’s comment section on its website “went down” during a net neutrality debate.
“This is completely unacceptable,” Pai said in a statement, referring to Bray for spreading the bad information. Pai, who was appointed by President Donald Trump, went on to say that he was not aware that the DDoS “attack” claim was more than false. The mistake “triggered net neutrality supporters” and fueled many leftists to claim the government was suppressing their voice and trying to ban them from using the Internet.
“I’m also disappointed that some working under the former CIO apparently either disagreed with the information that he was presenting or had questions about it, yet didn’t feel comfortable communicating their concerns to me or my office,” Pai added.
Pai’s statement was in response to the agency’s inspector general releasing a report detailing its investigation into the alleged DDoS attack last year. A DDoS, or denial of service attack, is a cyber attack where a person or group uses a machine or network unavailable to its users. Essentially, it’s taking a network offline.
He also said that Bray and other Obama-era officials at the agency were responsible for spreading the false information and that his office is working to fix the mess he “inherited” from “the prior Administration” that led to fake DDoS attack scam being spread.
At the time, the FCC was holding early votes, having public discussions, and seeking opinions from a variety of people and groups on whether to scale back net neutrality regulations which were created by former president Barack Obama‘s administration.
In 2014, the Obama administration announced that it would push the FCC to begin enforcing net neutrality policies, which essentially forced Internet service providers to load all websites at the exact same speed.
Many conservatives argued that it was another overbearing rule imposed by the Obama administration to expand the size of the federal government and give it more power over companies who are competing for customers.
The rules played a big role in stifling opportunity for Internet service providers to create competition which largely allowed people to choose which services were better suited for their needs.
Soon after Trump took office, Pai and the FCC voted to repeal the net neutrality rules arguing that it crippled the idea of capitalism, free markets, and didn’t allow consumers to choose different options.
Many applauded the Trump administration for repealing the rules, but officials reportedly falsely claiming a DDoS attack occurred on the FCC’s website during the debate is not a good look.
While Pai said it was Obama-era officials who spread the misinformation, it overshadows the progress the Trump administration has made on an issue that the president said was important to him.
Now that the truth is out, many would agree that the FCC should get back to work and remove any officials who were responsible for spreading the fake news.