OFFICIAL STATEMENT REGARDING RECENT DDOS ATTACKS

An overview

Recently, beginning on June 6, our main web server has been facing Denial of Service attacks lasting on average less than 10 minutes. We believe attackers are using network stress-testing tools which are used in the industry to test for vulnerabilities in order to attack and undermine our network.

Why are we being attacked?

All of the attacks which we have caught real-time have been based in the United States. We think we are either being attacked by disgruntled former team members of one of our partner organizations, or we are being targeted by politically left-leaning individuals who do not support our mission, the U.S. government, or the values established in the United States Constitution.

What are we doing to mitigate the issue?

Currently, we are now monitoring the server and our equipment very closely in order to identify any attacks as they start. We will then be immediately blacklisting any IP or network which is suspected of attacking or attempting to attack our network. Attacks identified and reported by our Denial of Service protection software will be reported to the attackers’ ISPs at the earliest convenience, and any attacks which shut down or degrade the network will be reported to the Federal Bureau of Investigation through their Internet Crime Complaint Center located at ic3.gov.

How does this all affect me?

I use CYGO’s free online services

Until we are able to fully contain and prevent these attacks in total, short downtime, up to approximately 6 minutes at times could be experienced. We are currently seeking the appropriate actions to take to fully prevent this.

I read the CYGO blog

You likely won’t be affected, and if you are, just check back in a few minutes.

I use Drauger OS

We provide the Drauger OS website, email, and support system. You may receive short downtime, up to approximately 6 minutes at times, as well as slightly delayed response via support and email. We are currently seeking the appropriate actions to take to fully prevent this.

That’s all for now. More updates will be posted as needed.

TikTok: Really just innocent fun?

The first post in the CYGO contributor blog series.

What is TikTok?

According to Wikipedia, “TikTok is a Chinese video-sharing social networking service owned by ByteDance, a Beijing-based internet technology company founded in 2012 by Zhang Yiming. It is used to create short dance, lip-sync, comedy and talent videos.”

By that brief definition, TikTok is portrayed as a place for creators to express themselves, as well as something that could harbor an interesting and diverse community.

TikTok stifles true creativity and free expression.

TikTok is filled with unoriginal content. It is dominated by a majority of people recreating existing content including already popular mainstream soundtracks and such. It’s essentially a community of people beating dead horses. Considering the majority of its users recreate content; there is no true creative content shared through the platform.

It is also reasonable to assume that considering TikTok is a Chinese company (all Chinese companies are directly under the control of the Chinese government), that content posted on TikTok must conform to the ideals of the Chinese government, which can lead to user censorship, hence the loss of any sort of freedom of expression.

According to The Washington Post, last November a TikTok user located in New Jersey, Feroza Aziz, was suspended from the app after posting content which was openly anti-Chinese.

Leaked documentation from the company illustrates that they are making an attempt to censor content which is political or otherwise controversial in nature.

TikTok actively mines user data.

According to CNET news, a class action lawsuit was filed in December 2019 against ByteDance/TikTok by a California resident.

The lawsuit alleges that user content, such as videos only saved as drafts rather than videos which are published; without any user consent.

California resident Misty Hong in her lawsuit also claimed that she installed TikTok on her device but did not create an account, yet some time later she discovered that the application had created one on her behalf without permission.

TikTok not only disrespects its users’ privacy, but could be a U.S. national security risk.

Videos published on TikTok often contain close-ups of its users faces. Considering the Chinese government has access to essentially all of the data on ByteDance’s Chinese servers, such videos could be used for surveillance purposes, or even worse, for facial recognition software and/or databases.

It poses such a risk to United States national security that the Defense Department has advised government employees to cease use of TikTok, which has prompted the U.S. military to ban the app from all government-owned devices.

You’re funding all of this.

When using TikTok, users are served advertisements which provide the company with its substantial revenue. By using the application, you are funding a corporation which is mining user data, using such user data to serve targeted ads, and likely in some way to benefit the Chinese government. If all users came together and deleted their TikTok accounts as well as the application from their devices, we could help to curb these issues to an extent.

Thanks for reading! I look forward to continuing this blog series in an effort to further aid our community and readers in taking control of their privacy.

Update June 1, 2020

We have a new project in planning

I personally am planning to begin development on a project which will prove to be very useful to both new and existing users of CYGO. More details about what this project is will be coming soon when work begins. This will be another significant advancement for us over both Google and Microsoft if it is successful.

We’re having issues with storage

Currently we have identified issues with LVM partitioning on our main server. Some downtime in the coming week(s) should be expected as we attempt to solve this issue. Once this issue is solved, CYGO Cloud accounts will go back to normal, and new users will be accepted. We are also hoping to upgrade our storage capacity but that will depend on your help. We will attempt to provide updates on this issue as it is resolved, specific downtime information will be available in our Discord and Telegram communities, as well as by inquiry through Discord (HumbleTyrant#7317) or Telegram (@humbletyrant). During the downtime inquiry via email will not be possible.

A new blog series is set to start soon

Myself and a few other of our contributors have agreed to begin blogging about topics relating to online privacy, information security, online censorship, and the open source community. We are doing this in an effort to bring our community engaging and interesting content which they will hopefully find beneficial.

That’s all for now, thanks for reading!

Update May 21, 2020

Why has it been so long since the last blog post?

Within the past two months, CYGO has made many advancements which I am going to outline further in this post, which will give users a significantly-enhanced experience. As such, myself and the team have been very busy, working around the clock to keep our services available to everyone at top-notch quality.

Bleu is now considerably more stable

A plethora of frontend and backend issues with Bleu which have been persistent both before and some after the server move have been patched. This means that Bleu is more pleasing to they eye and considerably more likely to function as intended. Since it’s also now hosted on our own equipment, the previous long page load times are no longer an ailment and have been cut by more than half. Frontend updates and patches will continue to be applied as needed, any bug reports would be appreciated via email at contact@cygo.network or via Discord to HumbleTyrant#7317.

CYGOfile is now known as CYGO Cloud

We’ve decided that a name change was appropriate, as CYGO Cloud is more than just a place to store your files on the go! CYGO Cloud is currently being expanded into a full suite of web productivity apps. Not only is it a place to store your files, but it can also be used to listen to music, conveniently take notes using markdown, create mind maps, check your email, as well as chat with friends and colleagues using instant messaging or video conferencing! We are continuing to roll out updates to the platform and further expansion is currently in planning and consideration.

We’ve updated our terms of service agreement

As further preventative measures to prevent misuse of our platforms, as well as to help combat theft of our logo from happening once more, our terms of service are now a bit more strict and comprehensive. If you haven’t already read the updated terms, I recommend that you take a look.

We are still in need of volunteers!

We’re unable to post weekly community updates as we have no one willing to aid in writing them. Additionally, our community has grown in the past few weeks, and with the promotion of Bleu, we will be in need of a larger team! If you are interested, please take a look at this page. If you would be interested in one of the listed positions, or think you could contribute in some other way, please contact us via email at contact@cygo.network or contact me directly via Discord (HumbleTyrant#7317).

OFFICIAL STATEMENT REGARDING LOGO CHANGE

Over the next coming days, you will notice CYGO transitioning away from the old logos which we’ve been using since I created them one day during my lunch break back in March, 2018.

Why, you ask?

Over the past few months we have been contacted multiple times by an individual with malicious intent who has stolen our logo and claimed it as his own. Unfortunately, this individual has continued to harass me and my community members, as well as communicating threats against us.

My team and I concluded that it would be in our best interest to switch logos, as we were afraid that said individual could weaponize it against us and essentially ruin the integrity of CYGO as he is unethically selling the logo under more than 2 assumed names.

So, of course, we made a new logo

I have to give credit in its entirety to my assistant in graphic design, Madi. We were both very upset about losing the logo we’ve had for such a long time, but Madi had a very solid logo concept idea which looked nice in her sketches, and so I decided to put it together myself in Photoshop.

I, Madi, and the rest of the community seem to be very pleased with the new logo as it still embodies the spirit of our old, classic logo, while having a much more simple and sleek appearance.

BIG NEWS! Weekly address Monday, March 3, 2020

We have some exciting announcements this week!

As you’ve probably noticed, I haven’t posted on the blog in over 2 months. During this time, I and the other staff, aside from being very busy in our personal lives; have managed to make a lot of progress. Below are some of the things we’ve been working on.

CYGO Underground is back!

After being gone for over 6 months, I managed to stumble upon a backup of CYGO Underground version 5 from January, 2019. I restored this backup a little over a week ago, then copied over user accounts. You can now log into CYGO Underground using the same login credentials which you used previously. If you need your password reset, please contact either Ben or myself via Discord or email.

A large Reddit community, r/edgydarkdankmemes has come to us seeking refuge from Reddit’s left-wing censorship

Recently, Reddit has began quarantining and banning subreddits which do not expressly violate their community guidelines or terms of service based on their political views. This has had a negative effect on dark humor communities as much dark humor is more right-leaning. Not only this, but Reddit seems to distaste dark humor or humor that is perceptibly offensive. Recently, Reddit took another step in the direction of user censorship; by implementing a system that punishes users for upvoting “policy violating” content. What this is stated to mean, is that users can receive an account suspension or ban for upvoting posts which violate Reddit’s content policy. In all reality, this new implementation is exceedingly likely to be weaponized against Reddit communities which Reddit, Inc and its administrators dislike.

As such, the Reddit-based community r/edgydarkdankmemes will be moving to CYGO Network. Rather than using one of our existing applications, we are currently developing their own standalone community website. As a result, r/edgydarkdankmemes is being rebranded and simplified down to “EDDM”. One can navigate to the EDDM website and check our progress by clicking “EDDM” at the top menu. Additionally, the EDDM website will hold up to CYGO’s information privacy and security standards; meaning no information will be provided to any third party entities at any time for any reason, making your data safe with us, as CYGO is not for profit and relies simply on donations, not information harvesting or intrusive annoying advertisements.

CYGO Desktop is now available for Windows!

After months of thought, planning, and contemplation, the CYGO desktop application has finally been made available for Microsoft Windows. We owe a large thanks to our community administrator, Kasper Irelan, for developing and compiling the desktop application which is based on ElectronJS. Currently, an application for CYGO Underground is also in progress for GNU/Linux based systems by Thomas Castleman at Drauger OS, which will be Python-based.

Kasper didn’t just stop at CYGO Underground for desktop though, also now available is CYGOfile for desktop, making it easy to manage your files, listen to music, take notes, create mind maps, use integrated XMPP chat and more from just one portable desktop app. Soon to be released are Bleu for desktop and connectMail for desktop, which will be linked in the top menu upon their release.

That’s everything major for this week!

Stay tuned for next week’s blog post, as well as updates from the announcements channel in our Discord server.

Weekly Address December 12, 2019

And, as most people would’ve probably guessed, I’m back yet again! Anyway, this week has been slow and I’m a few days late writing this week’s address, but I will be giving a nice short summary of what we have going on.

A quick summary

  • We’ve been donated a VPS specifically for Bleu by our partner’s at Kavorti. Hosting Bleu on this VPS with a 64GB SSD and 3gbps internet should greatly improve application performance
  • Everything is running smoothly at the moment with no issues

If any developments occur, we will post updates in our Discord server and possibly here on the blog.

We have open volunteer positions!

I will be creating a page about open positions shortly however at the moment we are in need of a 3rd blog writer. Anyone who is interested please contact me via Discord or email at logan@cygonetwork.com

Weekly Address December 2, 2019

And I am back, once again; our third blog writer has left the CYGO team and as such we are looking for a new one! If you would like to contribute by writing on our blog then please contact me via Discord or by email at logan@cygonetwork.com

We have big news this week!

CYGOfile is back online

After about 3 weeks of downtime; CYGOfile is finally back online thanks to our friends at Kavorti providing improved hosting for the service.

If anyone has issues regarding access to CYGOfile, please contact me.

Bleu is now ready for production

After working on Bleu over the Thanksgiving holiday, it is now ready for usage! The original CYGO Network application will be archived tonight. CYGO Underground users should see these instructions in order to claim their Bleu account.

That’s all for this week, stay tuned in our Discord server for updates and keep a look out for next week’s post.

Weekly Address November 25, 2019

Hello again, everyone!

Due to unfortunate circumstances, our co-owner was not able to write this week’s address, so I’m back again. Hopefully she will be well enough to write in a few weeks.

Now, on to the exciting stuff!

This week, our main server has been upgraded, so there should be noticeably better performance across our entire network. Additionally, I have and am continuing to work on some configuration updates with Bleu in order to optimize page load times. So far, I have been able to cut the load time nearly in half, but our goal is a 5 second load time or less. I will keep everyone updated on this as I progress.

Yesterday, the owner of our partner Kavorti sent me an IM notifying me that he would be donating a VPS to us. As you know, CYGOfile is completely down at the moment, and as such this VPS will be used exclusively to run CYGOfile as well as other related applications as it has adequately high specifications.

When will CYGOfile be back up?

I am not yet 100% sure how much downtime we will have. This is mainly dependent on when our VPS is ready to be used. I apologize for the service interruption as I realize that it is very inconvenient for people who depend on CYGOfile for their daily cloud storage solution and web productivity suite. While it is currently down, all user data is intact and secure on two of my personal machines. If you are in need of a specific file, please contact me at logan@cygonetwork.com and I will get it to you as soon as I possibly can.

What’s going on with Bleu?

I plan on moving CYGO Underground accounts over to Bleu sometime soon since it is now functioning reliably. I will post specific updates to this after I finish moving accounts so that users know the necessary actions to take to reclaim their accounts.

I believe that covers most of our important recent events, stay tuned for next week’s blog post. As always, if you have any questions feel free to email me at logan@cygonetwork.com or IM me via Discord.

Hello, world! First weekly address.

Welcome to the new CYGO™ blog!

We are proud to announce that we now have a blog, where our team will be posting weekly updates regarding our web applications, events going on in the community, and anything new that’s going on.

So, let’s get started!

This week, we have a lot going on after two months of minimal change and progress. First of all, we have the blog up now, and our landing page is finished for the most part.

Additionally, we are continuing the development of Bleu. Currently our team is working on the front-end of the application, so that the user interface is pleasing for our users to look at.

Moving along, we have now integrated an XMPP/Jabber chat client within CYGOfile, which is available throughout the application, making it easy and convenient to chat with your friends and colleagues whilst browsing through files, taking notes, listening to music, or whatever it is that you use CYGOfile for. A big thanks to Amolith from NixNet for providing us with free accounts for our users on his XMPP server. You can get your account here, but there will be further documentation created soon to make the process more clear.

Now for some more important news;

We are currently planning on moving to a new server provided by our partners at Kavorti, meaning during the next few weeks some of our services may experience downtime. We are making this move due to the fact that our current provider’s server is overloaded and causing our web applications and online services to perform poorly. Please stay tuned in the #announcements channel in our Discord server for more information regarding future or ongoing service downtime.

I think that covers everything; keep a look out for next week’s address from Amyeal!