(CMR) Russian-speaking hackers reportedly knocked more than a dozen US airport websites, including for some of the nation’s largest airports, offline Monday morning.
The Russian-speaking hackers claimed responsibility for the attacks on 14 airports. The attack had no immediate impact on travel.
“Obviously, we’re tracking that, and there’s no concern about operations being disrupted,” Kiersten Todt, Chief of Staff of the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), said Monday at a security conference in Sea Island, Georgia.
The 14 websites include the one for Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. An employee there told CNN there were no operational impacts.
The Los Angeles International Airport website was offline earlier but appeared to be restored shortly before 9 a.m. Eastern. A spokesman did not immediately return a request for comment.
The hacking group known as Killnet listed multiple US airports as targets. It stepped up activity to target organizations in NATO countries after Russia’s February invasion of Ukraine. The loosely organized “hacktivists” are politically motivated to support the Kremlin, but ties to Moscow are unknown, CNN reported.
The group claimed responsibility last week for knocking offline US state government's websites. Killnet is also blamed for briefly downing a US Congress website in July and for cyberattacks on organizations in Lithuania after the country blocked the shipment of goods to the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad in June.
The type of cyberattack used by Killnet is known as “distributed denial of service” (DDoS), in which hackers flood computer servers with phony web traffic to knock them offline. These attacks are said to be superficial and short-lived.
A Transportation Security Administration spokesperson told CNN said the agency is monitoring the issue and working with airport partners.