On the 8th of October, the team over at RawGit announced that the GitHub CDN system is now in a sunset phase and will soon shut down. The project was started 5 years ago, with an intention to help users to quickly share example code or test pages in GitHub.
Using RawGit one could skip all the trouble of setting up a static site to a GitHub pages branch if they temporarily needed to share their examples. It acted as a caching proxy that ensured minimal load was placed on GitHub while users obtained easy static file hosting from a GitHub repo.
Why is RawGit shutting down?
August 2018 saw the news of crypto miners exploiting RawGit to use files from the GitHub repository. Attackers obtain user resources through RawGit CDN abuse and make the system weak. A user aliased as jdobt uploaded malicious files on GitHub, which were later cached using RawGit. Then using RawGit URLs, the hacker inserted the crypto jacking mining malware on sites such as WordPress and Drupal.
This could be seen as a potential reason for shutting down RawGit, especially after Ryan Grove, its creator stated that ‘RawGit has also become an attractive distribution mechanism for malware. Since I have almost no time to devote to fighting malware and abuse on RawGit (and since it would be no fun even if I did have the time), I feel the responsible thing to do is to shut it down. I would rather kill it than watch it be used to hurt people.’
Ryan has further mentioned a few free services as an alternative to some of RawGit functionalities. These being:
The GitHub repositories that have used RawGit to serve content within the last month will continue until at least October of 2019. URLs for previous repositories are no longer being served.
To know more about this announcement, head over to RawGit’s official blog.