Big internet outage! Looks intentional.

A massive co-ordinated series of cyber attacks has forced hundreds of major websites from Amazon to Twitter offline across the globe - and WikiLeaks believes its supporters are to blame.

It urged its backers to 'stop taking down the US internet', saying 'Mr Assange is still alive and WikiLeaks is still publishing'.

It then tweeted 'The Obama administration should not have attempted to misuse its instruments of state to stop criticism of its ruling party candidate.'

The Department of Homeland Security has already launched an urgent investigation into the crash, amid claims it could be a precursor to an attempt to disrupt the US Presidential election further.

Wikileaks has already come under fire for its decision to publish around 20,000 from John Podesta, Clinton’s campaign chair.

Internet service company Dyn, which controls the 'address book' of the internet for dozens of major companies, said that it had suffered its first denial of service (DDoS) attack shortly after 6AM ET (11AM BST), in an attack that mostly affected the east coast of the US.

It told CNBC the attack is 'well planned and executed, coming from tens of millions IP addresses at same time.'

It confirmed a second attack at 1PM ET, which appeared to be centred on UK servers, and later said 'several' attacks were underway on servers across the globe, with the west coast being particularly badly hit.

It was not immediately clear who was responsible and Gillian Christensen of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said the agency was 'investigating all potential causes.'

Political commentor Keith Olbermann even raised the possibility it could be a precursor to an attack on election day.

'Say, not to panic anybody, but what if the (attacks) today were practice for 11/8 ?' he tweeted.

Dyn said it had resolved one attack, which disrupted operations for about two hours, but disclosed a second attack a few hours later that was causing further disruptions.

After tweeting it had fixed the issue, the firm then tweeted 'We are continuing to mitigate a DDoS against our Managed DNS network,' as the second wave hit.

The cyber attack meant that millions of internet users could not access the websites of major online companies such as Netflix and Reddit as well as the crafts marketplace Etsy and the software developer site Github, according to media reports.

The website Gizmodo said it had received reports of difficulty at sites for media outlets including CNN, The Guardian, Wired, HBO and People as well as the money transfer service PayPal.

'This has prevented some of our customers from being able to pay with PayPal in certain regions,' said Paypal spokeswoman Amanda Miller.

'PayPal was not attacked directly, nor were any of our core services to business impacted in the disruption.'

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