Belgium’s NMBS railway gets hit by major DDOS attack, shutting down railway services.

Belgium, is definitely on the radar of countries targeted by threat actors, as Massive DDOS attack impacts NMBS railway, resulting to the shutting down of the company’s website, app, and station information screen.                

In what seem to have occurred in the early hours of Thursday, 18th Jan 2024, at exactly 2:00 a.m. Belgium time; NMBS railway was hit by a massive DDOS attack, resulting to failure in all digital services, as the company’s web and applications were forced to be offline.

Furthermore, the digital screen that conveys passengers trips and information’s were said to have been impacted as well.

It is no doubt that DDOS attacks, are now more sophisticated, as threat actors have discovered ways of circumventing IoT devices, and not just servers & infrastructures. This certainly, makes them to launch a massive attack capable of disrupting not just big organizations, but also government institutions.

Hackers are said to use this compromised IoT technologies, which serves as a large tree of devices infected with bots, to flood their target organizations server, infrastructure, and even network. Drawing a conclusion, it is no doubt, that this is what happened to NMBS railway, as the webservers hosting their web applications, and Digital information screens, were flooded with overwhelming traffic more than they can handle at a time, resulting to service disruption.

In other to prevent further damage, NMBS railway cybersecurity team, took a swift measure to turn off this servers hosting these digital services.

DDOS said to have disrupted NMBS railway website, app, and station information screen. Image-source: Fixitgearware

Impact of the NMBS Railway DDOS attack: 

The impact of the NMBS railway DDOS attack is certainly critical, as What seem to have just happened out of the blue, left passengers in a state of confusion and panic, due to the information screen which conveys trip timing were offline, and commuters were unable to access the app and website for purchasing trip tickets.

Remediation and Service restoration: 

In remediating the problem, and ensuring service is restored, NMBS railway, immediately filed a Judicial report, and publicly apologized for the unprecedented disruption of services, to its passengers. They further disclosed that the resulting incident was in no way related to the cyber-attack, which occurred in the early ours of Thursday, 18-January-2024.

We at Fixitgearware Security have an optimistic view, that this has been resolved for good. While it is difficult to prevent DDOS, as threat actors have alot of resources handy to use, we are suggesting, that big organization’s will also find ways in preventing this.

Either, by investing lots of resources to cyber-security research team, or possibly adopt the services of a CDN (Content Delivery Network).

 Remember to always stay safe, and be vigilant 🛡️!




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