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Project Shield

Every day, independent news, human rights, and election monitoring sites around the world are taken offline and silenced by attacks on their servers. Project Shield uses Google’s technology to protect websites at risk and keep them online.

Who it helps Independent news, Human rights & Election monitoring groups
What it does Digital Attack Protection

Protecting websites from digital attacks


A distributed denial of service attack (DDoS) is a type of digital attack where a hacker exploits thousands, or even millions, of computers and tricks them into visiting a website at the same time. The resulting flood of traffic often overwhelms servers and the website goes offline.

Independent news sites, election monitors, and human rights groups often don’t have the resources to protect themselves from attacks, which makes them an easy target for people who wants to censor free expression.

Project Shield uses technology called a reverse proxy, which allows a webmaster to serve their site through Google infrastructure for free, providing a “shield” against would-be attackers. So far we’ve protected hundreds of news organizations and human rights websites that have faced attacks aimed at censoring free expression. By protecting these sites, we’ve helped to keep vital information online during elections, major crises and conflicts.

Sergii Smitiienko
Sergii Smitiienko Systems Architect

“I did not leave home, I was sleeping near my working table with the monitors running with statistics, graphs, analyzers, and reports by our anti-DDoS tools.”Play Sergii's Story

Mariam Memarsadeghi
Mariam Memarsadeghi Social Entrepreneur

“We were getting really bombarded with DDoS attacks from the Iranian government, every few weeks, and then it became every day.”Play Mariam's Story

After the Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris, several news websites were bombarded by digital attacks. DDoS data ©2013, Arbor Networks, Inc.
An animation that explains Project Shield in more detail.
Product Manager CJ Adams presents the project at the Oslo Freedom Forum in 2014.
Technical Details
Read more about the impact of DDoS attacks in the world.
Buying attacks 01

According to TrendMicro Research you can buy a week-long DDoS attack on the black market for $150. And it’s only getting cheaper.

Thousands every day 02

According to an ATLAS Threat Report, there are more than 2000 daily DDoS Attacks observed worldwide by Arbor Networks.

Big impact 03

A Verisign/Merril Research study shows that ⅓ of all server downtime are attributed to DDoS attacks.

Know anyone working as a journalist, election monitor, or for a human rights organization who might need protection from DDoS attacks? Invite them to apply for Project Shield.