On Thursday, the ADV airport association reported that seven German airport websites were apparently targeted in a cyber attack, which occurred a day after a significant IT breakdown at Lufthansa that caused thousands of passengers to be stranded.
Düsseldorf, Nuremberg, and Dortmund were among the impacted airports, while the websites for Germany’s largest airports in Frankfurt, Munich, and Berlin were functioning normally.
The CEO of ADV, Ralph Beisel, stated that “once again, airports were targeted by massive DDoS attacks” and confirmed that the websites of seven airports were briefly out of service.
In a DDoS (denial-of-service) attack, a significant amount of internet traffic is directed towards specific servers in a relatively basic attempt by so-called “hacktivists” to cause them to go offline.
“As per the information currently available to us, other systems have not been impacted,” said Beisel. He further added that it is uncertain if the situation will extend to other locations.
This is not the first time that airports have been targeted by cyber attacks. In 2017, a DDoS attack impacted the flight information display systems of Frankfurt airport, causing significant disruptions. In 2018, Helsinki airport was also targeted in a DDoS attack that disrupted flight schedules.
The aviation industry is one of the critical infrastructure systems that has been increasingly targeted by cybercriminals. Cyber attacks on airports can cause severe disruptions to flights and passenger services, resulting in significant economic losses.