At around 0950 UTC on February 28th, connections to EVE started to behave strangely. Several attempts were made by this reporter to start the game via the launcher, all of which failed. Other attempts were made to start the game directly from the executable; those that were successful rapidly succumbed to socket failure, while others failed to connect at all.
After a few tweets from CCP devs saying they were looking into it, CCP Eterne posted on the forums at 1046 UTC that Tranquility was the target of a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack. He went on to state that the standard DDoS rules apply: any ships lost will be reimbursed and any other circumstances, such as failed missions, should be petitioned as “It's standard procedure to reimburse things lost during a DDoS and other confirmed server problems.”
CCP Eterne posted again at 1115 UTC that the server was down for scheduled downtime, which usually begins at 1100 UTC, and that the DDoS had stopped. The servers were up at 1122 UTC and EVE is now back to normal.
GM Spiral later posted more information regarding the DDoS reimbursement policy:
We'll be able to reverse any standings penalties attributed to the DDoS.
We'll also be able to reset any lost/failed COSMOS, storyline, or Epic Arc missions so you'll have a fair shot at doing them again.
Asset reimbursement for losses attributable to the DDoS will be strongly considered.
We apologize up front for any delays in responding to tickets submitted due to this, but we assure you that all will be responded to.
This is the second attack on EVE this year. On New Year’s Eve, a group called DerpTrolling targeted a streamer named PhantomL0rd. They DDoSed every game the streamer played, including EVE Online. Another notable DDosS attack happened in June of 2011, when LuLzsec attacked several targets, including EVE Online. That attack took Tranquility down for a significant time, and CCP compensated players with fifty thousand free skillpoints. Given the minimal impact of this latest attack, however, a similar skillpoint distribution is unlikely.