However, there is no evidence that any airport operations were impacted. On Monday morning, at least 13 U.S. flight travel websites were unavailable.
A Russian hacktivist group identified at least 13 U.S. air travel websites as potential targets for cyberattacks on Monday morning, including those for Hartsfield-Jackson International in Atlanta and Los Angeles International Airport, two of the largest airports in the nation.
No evidence suggests that any airport operations were impacted, and the kind of cyberattack the hackers allegedly used leaves no long-term traces. However, it served as a warning about the potential harm that Killnet, a pro-Russian organisation, can do to American websites.
Last week, Killnet targeted the websites of numerous US states, successfully taking Kentucky.gov and Colorado.gov offline for a few hours each.
Killnet specialises in DDoS attacks, or distributed denial of service attacks, which flood a website with traffic. DDoS assaults can take websites offline for hours or even days, despite the fact that they are typically regarded as little more than a nuisance.
On its Telegram channel, Killnet routinely uploads lists of targeted websites, inviting other Russia supporters with beginner-level hacking skills to join it in attempting to disrupt them. It published a list of websites on Monday morning for 49 airports and other air travel locations, the majority of them in the United States, as its most recent targets.
The FlyLAX.com website was temporarily impacted early this morning, according to a Los Angeles International Airport representative, although flights were unaffected.
“Only a small area of the public facing FlyLAX.com website experienced the service disruption. There were no operational hiccups or compromised internal airport systems “added the official.
The principal cybersecurity organisation of the federal government, the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency, declined to comment. Requests for comment from the U.S. Department of Transportation and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport were not immediately fulfilled.
The websites for many airports, including Atlanta International, Montgomery, Alabama, Los Angeles International, Long Beach, California, Delaware Coastal, Southwest Florida International, Central Illinois Regional, Indianapolis International, Des Moines International, Jackson Municipal in Mississippi, and St. Louis Lambert International, had issues loading, according to an investigation by NBC News of the 49 websites posted on the Killnet Telegram channel.
Some of Killnet’s targets showed a lack of familiarity with American airports. It cited the flychicago.com website, which was unavailable on Monday, but not the websites for Chicago’s major airports, such as O’Hare International or Midway International. Similar to that, it targeted Honolulu International, but not the state of Hawaii’s website for air travel, which was also inaccessible.