Polish airline, hit by cyber attack, says all carriers are at risk

Discussion in 'Other Airlines | Europe' started by Newscience, Jun 22, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    Polish airline, hit by cyber attack, says all carriers are at risk

    No airline is safe from the type of cyber attack that grounded aircraft and hundreds of passengers at Poland's busiest airport at the weekend, the chief executive of Polish national carrier LOT [LOT.UL] said on Monday.

    Poland's domestic intelligence agency said it had been called in to investigate, but there was no word on who might be responsible for the attack, which disabled the system LOT uses for issuing flights plans.

    Read the full story here:

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/06/22/us-poland-lot-cybercrime-idUSKBN0P21DC20150622
     
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  2. newbluesea
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    newbluesea Gold Member

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    So the Russians are at it again.. bet they will blame Polish "patriots" who want to join Russia.:rolleyes:
     
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  3. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    That's about as likely as an ice storm in July! In 1944 Warsaw, the Polish "Rising" rebelled against their Nazi occupiers. They were encouraged to do so by Russian forces who sat across Vistula River, and did absolutely nothing. The Nazis then crushed the rebellion, leveled Warsaw, and shot the Warsaw residents until they ran out of bullets. Visit the Warsaw Rising Museum (Muzeum Powstania Warszawskiego) in Warsaw to view this history through artifacts and first-hand recorded testimony. There's little reason for the Poles to quickly forget about those "Russian patriots" (or the German ones for that matter)!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warsaw_Uprising_Museum
    http://www.1944.pl/en/
     
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  4. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    This is just some nonsense excuse that they're using to try to skirt blame for their lack of preparation.

    You can easily host stuff behind cloudfare or half a dozen other providers and have them mitigate ddos attacks before they cripple your infrastructure. Large companies that require uptime don't mind paying for those types of assurances, especially nowadays when you have 12 year old kids with access to step by step guides they can use to create amplification attacks.
     
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  5. newbluesea
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    newbluesea Gold Member

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    I agree with all you say above... but my comment was really what the Russians might say about who carried out this attack.. even if.... or more likely when the finger is pointed in their direction.

    Could be a test run .. next target AA or DL.
     
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  6. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    Possibly, but @viguera thinks very differently!
     
  7. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    And just how do you know this for sure?
     
  8. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    It's 2015... the only companies with a major web-facing presence that don't have this sort of measure in place are those either too naive to think they would ever be attacked, or too stupid and/or cheap to plan for a contingency.

    And if whatever system they use to issue flight plans is connected to the public internet, and/or not protected from this type of attack, that's even more asinine.

    Chances are that this is something significantly more nefarious than just a ddos attack, and more along the lines of the flight plan issue United had earlier this month -- some kind of intrusion that was able to compromise some of their internal systems and issued bad / corrupted flight plan information to their flights.
     
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  9. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    Thanks for explaining this with more detail! ;)

    And sadly, the companies "either too naive to think they would ever be attacked, or too stupid and/or cheap to plan for a contingency" include the US government, where a recent computer hack at the Office of Policy and Management (OPM) caused compromised personal data for over 4 million federal employees. I for one am amazed at when my personal data is compromised by a hack at a bank or business, and all I receive is a form letter or email telling me to change my password! :mad:
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2015
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  10. Counsellor
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    Counsellor Gold Member

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    One could say much the same about OPM (and indeed, a number of inspections did, but the findings and recommendations were not followed).

    Old-fashioned skeleton keys are effective because there are still lots of locks around that they work on.

    Edited to add: I see Newscience anticipated me on that.
     
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  11. Sammich

    Sammich Gold Member

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    lmao. Most likely hosted their internal servers on public net.

    Instructions for Pilots:
    Enter http://xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx/ from any device and just download your flight plans. :rolleyes:;)
     
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  12. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Seriously though, I wouldn't doubt that it would be something similar.

    The internet has created a huge (mostly free) conduit for companies to connect their systems, but at the same time it makes things so much easier to access and abuse. The OPM problem is a perfect example... you have government agencies with disparate systems that need to integrate, but the days of having dedicated (expensive) leased lines connecting offices are long gone, because it's just SO much easier to use the public internet for that. Of course the problem with that is that any single system that's exposed to the outside becomes an entry point for the rest of the network, and eventually someone will poke at it enough to find a vulnerability and have access to the whole thing.

    Airlines have employee portals where FAs can go in and book non-revenue flights, and of course this is tied into other systems even if just partially, since it needs to keep track of loads and other flight information. My guess is that someone with enough time and knowledge that can finagle their way into that system could eventually access a lot of other internal systems which really shouldn't be accessible from the outside. That's the problem with bad network isolation, and sacrificing security for the sake of convenience.
     
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  13. milchap
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    milchap Gold Member

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    Terrorism ?
     
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  14. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Could be... but amateurish at best.

    If you put on your Lex Luthor hat for a second and you think about how you'd go about this if you were really evil, it's a pretty bad approach. You can't just hand out bad flight plans and expect that nobody will notice...
     
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  15. milchap
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    milchap Gold Member

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    ....mischief ?
     
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  16. Sammich

    Sammich Gold Member

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    Yup. They failed on that miserably. We can lay a hand of responsibility on their IT department, but most likely they knew the risks, and were just pressured to do otherwise (by the admins).

    Can't tell you how many times companies try to skim on something because of either 1) cost 2) convenience 3) politics, then later on backfiring when it sh*t goes downhill.
     
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  17. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    Well, at least at the OPM, according to their director, no one was responsible for the data hack of 18 million records! :rolleyes::(:mad:

    See:

    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/201...d-by-govt-cyber-breach-soars-to-at-least-18m/
     
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