Yesterday 9/10/2012 the GoDaddy.com DNS servers were not working from about 12:00 noon until around 5:00 pm. This left several million business web sites unavailable, even through the web sites themselves were fine, because the name servers (that point browsers to the web sites by name, e.g. google.com, facebook.com, or jdnash.com) were broken. Although an individual claiming to be a rogue Anomyous “security expert” claimed credit for the outage, GoDaddy revealed that it was an internal error, not an external hack, that scrambled the DNS data. See http://www.networkworld.com/news/2012/091112-godaddy-hack-262342.html for details.
The event can be a wake up call for business, both to back up our web sites and to use a little wiser implementation of DNS servers in our domain registry entries — in particular, to specify name lookup via more than one DNS company so that if one company is unavailable, the other will still work and access to our web sites will be unaffected by a single point failure. Blogger Robert Simpson writes about how to do this on his blog at SpitBall.com, http://www.spitballs.com/Blog/Entries/2012/9/10_How_To_Keep_Your_Web_Site_Up_During_a_DNS_Outage.html.