Internet users in China had their service briefly disrupted after distributed denial-of-service attacks hit the country's .cn top-level domain.
According to China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC), the first attack occurred early Sunday and was followed by a second attack. Service was gradually restored over the course of several hours.
"Currently, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has started "Domain Name System Security specific contingency plans" to further the protection of national domain name resolution services," the CNNIC wrote Sunday in an announcement.
The center also condemned the use of cyber attacks on the Internet and stated it will continue to work with relevant departments to coordinate efforts to enhance service capabilities.
Only a portion of .cn sites were knocked completely offline. In comments to the Wall Street Journal, web performance and security firm CloudFlare reported noticing a 32 percent drop in traffic for the Chinese domains on the company's network during the attack.
Just recently, in its State of the Internet report, Akamai Technologies named China as the source for the largest share of attack traffic, accounting for more than a third of the total in the first quarter of 2013. The United States ranked third with 8.3 percent. Indonesia (21 percent) was second.
According to recent research from Arbor Networks, the average size of DDoS attacks increased 43 percent in the first half of this year, with 46.5 percent of attacks topping 1 Gbps. In June, the average attack size was 2.7 Gpbs.
"The fact that an average attack is now over the 2Gb/sec threshold means that it can saturate the Internet connectivity of a high proportion of businesses," said Darren Anstee, Solutions Architect for Arbor Networks. "When this occurs organizations need a cloud or service provider based DDoS mitigation service to deal with the attack traffic, as there is nothing they can do at their end of their links."